Contributing to the Archives Hub is a great way to expose your collections to a wider audience and experience the benefits of being part of a large-scale cross-searching service.
Contributions are welcomed from institutions in all UK sectors who hold collections of value to education and research, and contributing to the Hub is free. See our collection policy for more information. If you're interested in becoming an Archives Hub contributor, please Email us.
You can submit Online Resources in addition to standard archival collection descriptions.
What you need to do
In order to contribute archival collection descriptions to the Hub:
1. Let us know that you are interested. We will send you some information and we'll ask you for some basic details about your repository. We wil also ask for your archon code, which is a unique code supplied by The National Archives, so it is worth applying for this if you intend to contribute and do not have one.
2. We will create a basic repository entry for you within the Archives Portal Europe (APE). Currently your repository information is created in APE, although we are planning to change this so that you create it within our own EAD Editor.
3. We will give you a login for APE so you can revise and add to your directory entry.
4. We will provide a login for the Editor if you want to use it, or discuss exporting from your system.
What you need to know
We have introduced an administrative interface for all our users. We will give you a login and you will be able to view, search, upload and un-publish/re-publish your descriptions.
You can create, edit and submit descriptions as and when suits you. Some contributors send hundreds of detailed descriptions; others send just a few collection level descriptions - it is entirely your choice.
We have an Open Data ethos, and are very keen to promote open and reusable metadata. We are keen to encourage initiatives for the free-flow of data, to help increase profile and use of archives. Therefore we apply an open licence to our metadata. This does not apply to actual content, such as images that may be displayed as part of your collection descriptions.
The Archives Hub descriptions are created in Encoded Archival Description (EAD). This is an international standard that provides for sustainability and interoperability, enabling us to exchange data and giving the potential to expose the descriptions to the widest possible audience.
The repository information is created in Encoded Archival Guide (EAG). This is an XML rendering of the ISDIAH standard endorsed by the International Council on Archives.
If you are creating new descriptions, or modifying existing descriptions, you may wish to use our EAD Editor. This allows you to easily create, modify, and submit EAD descriptions. The Editor is user-friendly, and supports collection-level and component-level descriptions, as well as the inclusion of digital objects.
You can export descriptions from Calm and we are working on taking in exports from other Archive Management Systems. Please contact us if you would like to use this approach. If you are a Calm user we will ask for some sample descriptions in order to begin to set up a workflow.
You can use any other means to create valid EAD, but please do send us a test description so that we can check that the EAD complies with our Hub EAD requirements.
Every month we have a feature on a theme or specific collection from the Archives Hub. It’s a great way to promote your collections and you can use this to coincide with the launch of an exhibition or a project. The features get good search engine ranking, so they are a useful way to profile your collections. Contact us if you're interested in writing or contributing a feature.
"I think it has the potential to dramatically improve access to our collections once we start getting more data onto the Hub...All these uploads went very smoothly, and I am extremely pleasantly surprised at how easy and quick the process is. No doubt it has taken a great deal of work to get to this point, so thank you. Please pass my complements on to the rest of your team; I'm very impressed." (Local Authority Archive, 2019)