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Preservation in a cross-border perspective

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09/06/2015 - Restoration - Events - State Archives in Eupen

This year, the Internationales Archivsymposion took place in Eupen on May 21st and 22nd. The beautiful venue – the recently fully restored 18th-century convent Heidberg – was perfectly suited for reflexions about this year’s subject: preservation in a cross-border perspective.

The Internationales Archivsymposion 2015

About fifty archivists from the Benelux and Germany gathered in Eupen. Nine speakers presented papers about the vast array of activities related to archive preservation, which is one of the key missions of each archive institution. Among the topics addressed were specialist facilities, preservation and restoration, prevention, risk analysis, damage assessment, digitisation, de‑acidification, copying on microfilm and advanced training.

A very impressive presentation was given by the director of the Historical Archive of the City of Cologne who gave a lively account of the 29-months long rescue operations and the large-scale restoration project for the archives damaged during the collapse of the Historical Archive building in 2009. The Dutch large-scale project “Metamorfoze” also received much attention.

A discussion round with representatives of companies working in the restoration and mass treatment sector (de-acidification, cleaning, mould treatment) also took place during the symposium. The companies brought an information and demonstration stand to the venue.

The Belgian papers bore on three subjects:

                1. An overview of the general preservation policy of the Belgian State Archives and current state of affairs;
                2. The functioning and activities of the restoration workshop of the Belgian State Archives;
                3. Mass-treatment of mould-infected archives of the Federal Public Service (FPS) Finance, a collaboration project between the State Archives and the FPS Finance.

The abstracts of the papers presented at the Internationales Archivsymposion 2015 can be downloaded here (available in Dutch, French, German and English).

The publication of the proceedings of the Internationales Archivsymposion 2015 is scheduled for May 2016.

The most recent proceedings of the Internationales Archivsymposion at a glance

Which subjects were addressed in the past years? An overview:

  • 2010: Archieves and youth + 2011: The First World War and Archives
    Els HERREBOUT (ed.), Internationale archivsymposien in Ede (NL) (2010) und Lüttich (B) (2011): Annalen, Miscellanea Archivistica Studia 204, National Archives of Belgium, Brussels, 2012.
    Publication no. 5095, € 15,00 (+ shipping costs).
  • 2012: Cross-border Migrations and Archives 
    Els HERREBOUT (ed.), Internationales Archivsymposion in Luxemburg (2012) : Grenzüberschreitende Migration und Archive : Annalen Mit einem Nachtrag zum Symposion Lüttich (2011) Erster Weltkrieg, Miscellanea Archivistica Studia 207, National Archives of Belgium, Brussels, 2013.
    Publication no. 5218, € 9,00 (+ shipping costs).
  • 2013: The Profile of Archive Services and their Personnel
    Els HERREBOUT (ed.), Internationales Archivsymposion in Xanten (2013) : Anforderungsprofile an Archive und ihr Personal : Aufgaben - Qualifikationen : Annalen, Miscellanea Archivistica Studia 209, National Archives of Belgium, Brussels, 2014.
    Publication no. 5326, € 5,00 (+ shipping costs).
  • 2014: Appraisal and formation of collections
    Els HERREBOUT (ed.), Internationales Archivsymposion in Maastricht (2014) : Bewertung und Überlieferungsbildung : Annalen, Miscellanea Archivistica Studia 2011, National Archives of Belgium, Brussels, 2014.
    Publication no. 5473, € 6,00 (+ shipping costs).

These publications can be purchased directly at the Shop of the National Archives or ordered via

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