The Digital Archivist We Prepared Earlier

The University of Melbourne Archives is excited to announce the appointment of Lachlan Glanville as our first full-time continuing Digital Archivist, after a very competitive selection process. His new role combines mature knowledge of archival theory and systems with the skills of hands-on digital preservation and problem solving.

Lachlan is best known at the University of Melbourne as one of the project archivists cataloguing the Germaine Greer Collection and for his publications and presentations on the process. His March 2017 article in The Conversation Friday Essay: Reading Germaine Greer’s Mail was republished in the Guardian, turned into a Conversation Essay on Air  and published in The Conversation’s 2017 Yearbook – Articles from Australia’s top thinkers.

It was during the Greer archive project that Lachlan showed his skill as a Digital Archivist. Using the University’s digital forensic infrastructure, he imaged – and taught others to image – 500 disks of Greer’s removable media. He participated in UMA’s pilot project testing the software bundle Archivematica to stabilise digital-originals for inclusion in a future storage and access system for born-digital records. 

Digital archiving is a nascent practice, and Lachlan has shown impressive initiative in solving problems with the Greer removable media by exploring online resources and communities of practice from around the world. He has also written on his experience for both local and international audiences in his UMA Blog post, Hexed – Discoveries and Challenges in Archiving Born-Digital Records.

Lachlan’s first challenge as a new member of the UMA Digital and Systems team will be to collaborate with Records Services to test run software to archive the University’s own digital records in accordance with Public Record Office Victoria standards. He will also be involved in the anticipated upgrade of the UMA database to one which will enable display of digital-original records, and in the process undertaken by the Digital Preservation team to acquire University support for an international-standard digital preservation storage system.

Welcome Lachlan: we are glad to have you here, and there is no doubt that we need you and your diverse skills.