Arrangement and Description of TOBUNKEN Historical Papers: Utilizing Archives for Research – The 8th Seminar Held by the Department of Art Research, Archives and Information Systems
The Tokyo National Research Institute for Cultural Properties (TOBUNKEN) published 75 Years of the National Research Institute for Cultural Properties, Tokyo*, comprising of two volumes published from 2008 to 2010. Varieties of materials, mainly documents, were collected and created during its compiling and editing process. These are essential historical papers to discuss the TOBUNKEN activities. The Archive Section of the Department of Art Research, Archives and Information Systems has been cataloging these papers as “TOBUNKEN Historical Papers”.
The process to organize materials with arrangement and description to make them accessible and preserved for future use is one of the archivist’s important works. In the description process, material details and components are described to identify and represent the materials. Then, these data are analyzed and recorded. In the arrangement process, the materials are organized from both physical and intellectual aspects with respect to their provenance and original orders to protect their context. Through the arrangement and description, data are constructed for finding aids and ensuring usability.
TAMURA Ayako, Research Assistant of the Department, made a presentation on the organization of archival material both in person and online at the seminar held on January 31st, 2023. TAMURA discussed the arrangement and description to enable the materials accessible and utilized for research via the application of the second edition of ISAD(G): General International Standard Archival Description set by the International Council on Archives (ICA). She also introduced the materials recently found. Some materials were displayed in the room, and the participants could take them in their hands.
The seminar was chaired by KIKKAWA Hideki, the section head. The former editorial committee members of 75 Years of the National Research Institute for Cultural Properties, Tokyo participated in the seminar and shared the history and mission of the committee. Discussions pertaining to new research possibilities via the utilization of papers and the importance of recordkeeping of ongoing research projects were actively conducted. There are plans to make “TOBUNKEN Historical Papers” accessible this spring.
* The Tokyo National Research Institute for Cultural Properties (TOBUNKEN) was called the National Research Institute for Cultural Properties, Tokyo at the time.