Documenting and managing collections

Occupying an important place among the statutory activities of the National Institute of Museums and Public Collections is its support to museums in managing their collections, i.e. in cataloguing collections and record-keeping, including digitally, assisting with artefact circulation and overseeing documentation and assets.

The Institute’s research into museum digitization processes shows that the small percentage of generated and published digital documentation is a result of not only technical and financial limitations but also of the ambiguity and inconsistency of regulations relating to methods of record-keeping on museum assets. For this reason, NIMOZ has undertaken action aiming to standardize evidential documentation and practices connected with collection management in Poland. In response to uncertainties reported by museum representatives relating to collection management – including aspects such as acquisitions, valuation, making documentation entries, accepting long-term loans, and collection supervision – we are conducting analyses of the existing regulations and standards pertaining to these areas.

An important element of implementing standards and good practices are training initiatives for staff dealing with collection documentation, be it in traditional or digital form. Among the topics covered by these training sessions are collection management, documentation and transport, digital visual documentation, terminological control, and the legal aspects of collection documentation and accessibility.

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