CFP: Records Management Journal

Records Management Journal – Themed issue call for papers

Fresh Insights: Student Research in Records Management

Editor: Fiorella Foscarini, University of Amsterdam

Guest Editor: Donald Force, School of Information Studies, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

The Records Management Journal invites submissions for a themed issue dedicated to emerging scholars who are engaged in original research broadly related to the area of records and information management.  Students enrolled in undergraduate, graduate, and post-graduate programs at the time of the issuing of this call are invited to submit papers based on course assignments, projects, theses, or other kinds of research work carried out as part of their education.

We welcome contributions about, but not limited to, the following themes:

  • Concepts of record, document, information, archives
  • Recordkeeping theories, methods, and practices
  • History of recordkeeping
  • Professional roles and skills
  • Recordkeeping systems, technologies, and infrastructures
  • Digital preservation and access
  • User perspectives
  • Organizational culture
  • Personal recordkeeping
  • Studies of textual and non-textual documents
  • Contemporary perspectives on records, information, and archives

Students at all stages of their study who have done some research on issues that may be of interest to the Records Management Journal are invited to submit an extended abstract according to the instructions mentioned below.

Submission Deadlines:

  • Extended abstracts (more info below): 1 May 2016
  • Abstracts accepted and authors notified no later than: 30 May 2016
  • Full paper submitted: 1 October 2016
  • Review, revision and final acceptance: 28 February 2017

Submission Process:

Extended abstracts should be a 500-word version of the Records Management Journal?s structured abstract, using the headings described in the author guidelines ( Under the design/methodology/approach heading, please include the following as appropriate to the type of paper:

  • (If it is a theoretical or conceptual paper) what is the approach to the topic? Briefly outline existing knowledge and the value added by the paper compared to that.
  • (If it is a research paper) what is the main research question or aim? What are the research strategy and the main method(s) used?
  • (If the paper is a case study) outline its scope and nature and the method of deriving conclusions.

Please send your extended abstract to the Journal Editor Fiorella Foscarini:

Full papers (for accepted abstracts) should be 3000-7000 words (excluding references) and should be prepared using the RMJ guidelines, which can be read here: Papers will be reviewed following the journal?s standard double-blind peer review process.

Fiorella Foscarini (<>) is also happy to receive informal enquiries.


Donald C. Force, PhD

Assistant Professor
School of Information Studies
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
Office: NWQ 3495
Phone: (414) 229-2792

AASLH’s “Interpreting LGBT History” Wins 2016 NCPH Book Award

Read more on the AASLH blog:

Purchase the book:

“Interpreting History” Series:

Help SAA Shape Future Publications

The SAA Publications Board needs you! Take this 10-minute survey about your book reading preferences and help shape the future of book publishing at SAA. Submit your responses today (, and enter your name in the drawing to win a new iPad with complimentary digital access to three SAA books.

As a former member of the Publications Board, I know your voice is important. Publishing is changing and evolving, and knowing how both members and non-members would like to access is important to the development of SAA publishing. Please share your opinion!

Forced Writing: On the Tenure-track

Most of us became archivists because we love history, organizing, libraries, and “old stuff.” Though we had to write during library school, many of us did not plan on writing more than finding aids. However, many academic librarians and archivists are expected to publish as one aspect of receiving tenure. It is stressful when your job is contingent on fulfilling this obligation.

If writing isn’t a passion, forced publishing is definitely a challenge. At my institution, obtaining tenure has requirements related to librarianship, publishing/creative works, and service. When I started, I was one year out of finishing my PhD. Obtaining that degree made me much better prepared for the publishing requirement and for that I am grateful. Library schools may emphasize writing, but it’s more of a requirement for that degree than to pursue publishing.

It is stressful for many tenure-track archivists to publish. As noted previously, I’ve had many discussions with people who wonder if they have anything to say (see here and here). There is a time requirement to go up for tenure, therefore a time requirement to publish articles or book chapters. On the one hand, it forces you to be proactive in deciding what to write about, as Eira Tansey wrote. On the other hand, it can be an incredible amount of pressure.

I’m not well-versed in tenure requirements across all academic institutions, but I will generalize that many require publishing peer-review articles. Having one or more articles evaluated by professional peers is much more rigorous, therefore has more weight, than publishing newsletter articles, blog posts, or other informal writings. Writing a book has merit as well, but as we have fewer book publishing options than other academic disciplines, that is harder to accomplish (plus it takes a lot longer).

Having gone through the tenure process and as a supervisor to library faculty, here’s what I can offer:

  • Pick a journal first. Find one that aligns with your interests and passions. Read a few of the recent articles, browse past issues to see topics, etc. Contact the editor to ask if your idea would be of interest. And read the information for authors. While we all may aspire to write for The American Archivist, it’s highly competitive and you might be better off starting with another journal.
  • Don’t want to write about archives practices? Depending on your institution’s requirements, consider publishing in non-archives journals. Try library or other academic disciplinary journals. Do archival research on a topic of interest. (Blatant self-promotion, I used the archival research I did for my dissertation to publish in Reception: Texts, Readers, Audiences, History)
  • Start with an idea. You don’t have to have an exact argument to start writing. Once you research and write out your thoughts, it will evolve and become focused. Interested in digital forensics? privacy and confidentiality? outreach? Have you read an article or book that you strongly disagree with or you think could be improved or reacted to? Read a few books and articles to see what’s been said, what you agree/disagree with, then write.
  • Find colleagues with similar interests to see about co-authorship.
  • Start with a library school paper or presentation and expand it.
  • Write about something that interests you. It’s hard to be disciplined about writing when you have little or no interest in the subject.
  • Write about a project you completed, an initiative you started, or your experience with any aspect of archives. While theory is important, many archivists are interested in others’ practices that they can implement or adapt.
  • Write, write, write.
  • Start earlier rather than later. It can take 1-2 years to publish an article, taking into account the writing, peer-review, editing, and final publication. There’s no guarantee of acceptance, and you may have to submit, resubmit, or rewrite more than one article or for more than one journal. (Yes, an article I wrote with colleagues was rejected)
  • Create goals, timelines, outlines, number of pages to write a day/week, place to write, music to listen to, number of diet cokes to drink, and so forth. When you accomplish your set goals (say, weekly), reward yourself.
  • Make writing a priority and be disciplined. Carve out time daily/weekly (whatever works for you) to keep momentum and progress.
  • Write, write, write.
  • Take it a little at a time. Thinking about the entire article can be overwhelming, so focus on a section. Before you know it, you’ll have the whole article written.
  • Find support, whether at your institution, other colleagues, a writing group, or friends. Talking to people about your ideas or having others read your writing can go a long way to stay motivated.
  • Write, write, write.
  • Allow yourself to gripe and complain. Then let it go and keep writing.
  • Don’t try to make an article perfect. Be coherent, concise, grammatically correct (or at least mostly), and cite your sources. But remember that editors and reviewers will always have feedback, suggestions, and grammatical corrections.
  • Write one article at a time.
  • Don’t be overambitious. For example, if you are interested in doing a survey but don’t have experience in qualitative/quantitative analysis, it could be difficult to take on such a project.
  • Write, write, write.



Call: SAA Research Forum

I have yet to attend SAA’s Research Forum, though I’m always intrigued by it. If you’ve presented or attended, please share your experience in the comments.

Here is the information:

They also share everything from past Forums, including posters, research reports, and peer-review research papers:

New Book: Latinos in Libraries, Museums, and Archives

From the Rowman and Littlefield website:

Latinos in Libraries, Museums, and Archives: Cultural Competence in Action! An Asset-Based Approach
Patricia Montiel-Overall; Annabelle Villaescusa Nuñez, Verónica Reyes Escudero

Written by three experienced LIS professionals, Latinos in Libraries, Museums, and Archives demonstrates the meaning of cultural competence in the everyday work in libraries, archives, museums, and special collections with Latino populations. The authors focus on their areas of expertise including academic, school, public libraries, health sciences, archives, and special collections to show the importance of understanding how cultural competence effects the day-to-day communication, relationship building, and information provision with Latinos. They acknowledge the role of both tacit and explicit knowledge in their work, and discuss ways in which cultural competence is integral to successful delivery of services to, communication with, and relationship building with Latino communities.