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Innovation

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The microfilm of the new millennium: the digitization of the liberation struggle archives heritage in east and southern Africa

Francis Garaba, Christine Stilwell, Patrick Ngulube

Abstract


New information and communication technologies have greatly affected archival institutions. It is therefore not surprising that the world of archival management has presently been confronted with many challenges as new technologies transform the archival landscape. Digital technologies are challenging custodians’ abilities to preserve our archival heritage. This article provides an overview of digitization initiatives drawing, in the main, on a survey carried out in archival institutions within the east and southern African region. Modern technology has had a profound impact on how information is stored and accessed. A study carried out between 2006 and 2009 in heritage institutions, both private and public, with liberation struggle archives, within the Sub-Saharan region, revealed that digitization was the most widely used preservation strategy in the surveyed archival institutions. Resources permitting, archival institutions should adopt digitization for their liberation struggle heritage as a reformatting strategy in order to counter the problem posed by deteriorating media. The methodologies employed for data gathering included a survey, observation and structured interviews. This article provides the reader with the findings of the research and the opinions of the researchers. However, this paper does not contend or claim to be exhaustive of all issues pertaining to digitization.

Innovation No. 42, June 2011



AJOL African Journals Online