Prior to this traineeship, I was a Global Investment Manager at a multinational media agency. It was in many ways an interesting career that granted me the opportunity to spend some years working in Spain, but on returning to the UK I decided to move towards a career path that resonated more with me on a personal level.
Archiving soon emerged as an attractive option; my undergraduate degree was in History and Politics, and I enjoyed the time I spent researching at the National Archives at Kew and the School of South Asian Studies archives in Cambridge. I also liked the description that is sometimes given to archives, that they bring order to chaos; as a naturally analytical person, this idea had a strong pull for me.
I am the Digital Capacity Planning Trainee based at National Records of Scotland. The archival profession has undergone a dramatic transformation in recent years, as records are increasingly “born digital”; that is, they only ever exist in a digital form (emails, for example). There are distinct challenges when it comes to the safe preservation and storage of these records, and in some cases there is a gap in understanding amongst archivists about how best to manage and plan for the future with digital records. Working closely with the Digital Preservation Guidance Trainee Penny Wright, who is also based at NRS, and with Local Authorities themselves, I will be developing a tool to help Local Authority archivists throughout Scotland predict their future digital record storage requirements. The focus of this traineeship is a departure from the traditional image of the archivist as protector of fragile and often very old physical documents; it is a forward-looking project that seeks to provide solutions to new problems in a fast changing environment, which I find very exciting.
About National Records of Scotland
National Records of Scotland (NRS) is a non-ministerial department of the Scottish Government. Our purpose is to collect, preserve and produce information about Scotland's people and history and make it available to inform current and future generations.