Mr James Lowry BA, MA (Hons.)

Lecturer History

Research

Records and ICT at the Boundaries of the State: Refugee Needs, Rights and Uses

This is a collaboration with Prof. Anne Gilliland, Department of Information Studies, UCLA. It first aims to identify and make visible the many ways in which official records (including bio-records), bureaucratic practices and other more "irregular" forms and uses of records play crucial roles in the lives of displaced people as they travel across state boundaries, interact with governments and aid agencies in camps, asylum hearings, immigration vetting, claims for social services and so forth, and eventually resettle into new countries and interface with their bureaucratic systems or return/are returned to their places of origin. Secondly, it seeks to identify and understand from the perspectives of refugees, governments and aid agencies, the roles and implications of ICTs such as cloud services, social media and cellphones for the creation, movement, preservation and accessing of records. With this knowledge in hand, it then aims to identify ways in which professionals and agencies involved in archives and record-keeping in affected countries might contribute and collaborate through digital systems design to identifying and locating, protecting, validating, securing and certifying such records; and also to identify potential policy recommendations supporting specific refugee rights in records.

Sudan Memory: a partnership for conserving and promoting Sudanese cultural and documentary heritage

The project will establish digitisation service in Khartoum, hosted by Africa City of Technology, that will serve a number of libraries and archives throughout the country. The scanning service will have roving scanning facilities which can be sent to villages and homes, in order to capture materials in small archives, and family documents. The project anticipates delivering in excess of 10 million photographs, 20 million printed and manuscript pages and 100,000 maps. Audio-visual materials will also be captured. The Sudanese partners see the digitisation and dissemination of cultural heritage as a crucial part of the country’s move towards greater openness and democracy.


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