Land Acknowledgement
The University of Michigan is located on the traditional territory of the Anishinaabe people. In 1817, the Ojibwe, Odawa, and Bodewademi Nations made the largest single land transfer to the University of Michigan. This was offered ceremonially as a gift through the Treaty at the Foot of the Rapids so that their children could be educated. Through these words of acknowledgment, their contemporary and ancestral ties to the land and their contributions to the University are renewed and reaffirmed.

ICHORA 2020: Archives and the Digital World

Note: All times are on US Eastern time zone. 

This is the preliminary program as of September 16, 2020; please note schedule may be subject to change. 

Monday, October 26

12:00 PM–1:45 PM (EST)
  • Opening & Welcome
  • Keynote
2:00 PM–3:30 PM (EST)
PANEL 1: Re-Imagining Materiality: Three Histories of Archival Technologies
  • Pre-Digital Digitization: Copying and Surrogacy in English Archives  /  Michael Riordan (Oxford University)  
  • Registration Across Technologies: The Inscription of Value in Paper and Digital Records Systems  /  James Lowry (City University of New York) 
  • Differentiation in Description or How Archivists Invented the Semantic Web  /  Jenny Bunn (University College London)
Moderator: Greg Bak (University of Manitoba)

Tuesday, October 27

2:00 PM-3:30 PM (EST)
BOOK LAUNCH: Defining a Discipline: Archival Research and Practice in the 21st Century – Essays in Honor of Richard J. Cox, Edited by Jeannette A. Bastian and Elizabeth Yakel (Society of American Archivists, 2020).

More details will be announced soon. Please register here if you ONLY want to participate in the book launch. 

Order a copy of the book here.

4:00 PM-5:30 PM (EST)
PANEL 2: Ordering, Classifying, and Connecting
  • Cataloguing Culture: Histories of Documentation in an Ethnographic Museum  /  Hannah Turner (University of British Columbia)
  • Archives, Classification, and the Digital World  /  Ciaran Trace (University of Texas at Austin)
  • Enriching Metadata for Irish Traditional Music at the American Folklife Center  /  Patrick Egan (University College Cork)
Moderator: Adam Kriesberg (Simmons University)
5:45 PM-7:15 PM (EST)
PANEL 3: Deciding What to Keep: Archivists as Co-creators of Historical Meanings
  • The Evolution of Archivists’ Roles from Keepers to Selectors to Collaborators  /  Nick Pavlik (Bowling Green State University)
  • Transition from Analog to Digital – A Case Study of Special Olympics’ World Games Documentation  /  Jane Zhang (Catholic University of America)
  • Managing and Preserving the Immaterial: Digital Visual Effects Recordkeeping and Archiving  /  Evanthia Samaras (University of Technology Sydney)
Moderator: Itza A. Carbajal, University of Washington 

Wednesday, October 28

12:00 PM-1:30 PM (EST)
PANEL 4: Histories of Data Archiving: From Fisheries Research to Cybernetics
  • US-Soviet Joint Fisheries Research and the Data Legacy of the Cold War  /  Adam Kriesberg (Simmons University) and Jacob Kowall (Simmons University)
  • Machine Learning and Archival Practice: A Cybernetics Case Study on Computational Approaches to Digital Materials  /  Bethany Anderson (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)
Moderator: Ayoung Yoon (Indiana University–Purdue University Indianapolis, IUPUI)
1:45 PM-3:15 PM (EST)
PANEL 5: Digital Transformations, Changing Institutions
  • Seeing Software: Appraisal in Web Archives  /  Ed Summers (University of Maryland, College Park)
  • Digital Recordkeeping Practices at the University of Michigan Bentley Historical Library  /  Max Eckard (University of Michigan) and Dallas Pillen (Wayne State University)
  • Making Networks for the Library of the Future: Mechanization, Transcription and Standardization of Information in the ‘Biblioteca De Catalunya’. 1976-1986  /  Luz María Narbona (Archiveras sin Fronteras Chile)
Moderator: Patricia Garcia (University of Michigan)
3:30 PM-5:00 PM (EST)
  • Keynote

Thursday, October 29

2:00 PM-3:30 PM (EST)
PANEL 6: Digitization Under Duress
  • A Critical Analysis of the Representation of NARA’s INS Records in Ancestry’s Database Portal  /  Katharina Hering (German Historical Institute)
  • Stakes and Challenges of the Cameroon National Archives in the Face of Digitization  /  Tomla Ernestine Tatah Lukong (Cameroon Ministry of Arts and Culture)
Moderator: Eric Stoykovich (Trinity College) 
3:45 PM-5:15 PM (EST)
PANEL 7: Expanding Notions of Users and Use
  • From the Dustbin: Gleaning History in Contemporary China  /  Yi Lu (Harvard University)
  • Documenting Digital Knowledge Sharing in Indigenous Communities  /  Diana Marsh (University of Maryland, College Park)
  • Digital Archival Collections: Understanding their Use by Academic Historians  /  Donald Force (University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee)
Moderator: Anthea Josias (University of Michigan)

Friday, October 30

12:00 PM-1:30 PM (EST)
PANEL 8: What the Archives Can(t) Give Us: Thinking Through Archival Disturbances
  • Archival Cures: Refiguring Provenance and the Desire for the Whole  /  Gracen Brilmyer (McGill University)
  • Provenancial Fabulation: Exploring Records Creation in Digital Archives of Feminist Activism  /  Jessica Lapp (University of Toronto)
  • Digital Archives and Freedom from Political Repression  /  Ayantu Tibeso (University of California, Los Angeles)
Moderator: Heather MacNeil (University of Toronto)
2:00 PM-4:45 PM (EST)
  • Keynote
  • Closing

Code of Conduct

All attendees to the conference pledge to make participation in this event a harassment-free experience for everyone, regardless of age, body size, visible or invisible disability, ethnicity, sex characteristics, gender identity and expression, level of experience, education, socio-economic status, nationality, personal appearance, race, religion, or sexual identity and orientation.

We pledge to act and interact in ways that contribute to an open, welcoming, diverse, inclusive, and healthy community.

The conference will follow the standards of the Contributor Covenant Code of Conduct, which are described in full at Instances of abusive, harassing, or otherwise unacceptable behavior may be reported to the community leaders responsible for enforcement at All complaints will be reviewed and investigated promptly and fairly.