Piloting Reparative Description and Metadata in SNAC via the Indigenous Description Group


Archivists have recognized the need to rethink how this knowledge can be better represented, not only to heal previous harms but also to make information more accessible and usable for communities. A number of professional organizations and working groups have been developing inclusive description policies, resources, and approaches that can be leveraged in a wide range of institutional contexts. In March 2023, we launched Indigenous Description Group (IDG)–modeled after SNAC’s Enslaved Description Group (EDG)–within SNAC’s Editorial Standards Working Group. The goals of the IDG are to 1) improve accessibility to archival collections for Indigenous Tribal communities; 2) mitigate harm caused by extractive collecting processes; and 3) engage in reparative description across systems, at scale, and in an interoperable way.



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