Call for Papers: CoPAR and the Unexpected Re-use of Anthropological Archives in the Digital Age, American Anthropological Association Annual Meeting

CoPAR and the Unexpected Re-use of Anthropological Archives in the Digital Age

American Anthropological Association Annual Meeting
Evidence, Accident, Discovery
Minneapolis, MN, November 16-20, 2016

Diana E. Marsh
American Philosophical Society
Ricardo L. Punzalan
University of Maryland

Keywords: Archives, collections, re-use, digital media, fieldnotes

This panel aims to present stories of anthropological data re-use in the digital era. Following on the conference’s theme of Evidence, Accident, Discovery, this panel seeks real world case studies of unexpected re-uses of anthropological materials in digitized archival collections. Through these case studies, we aim to reflect on the ethical implications of anthropological data and their uses.

The motivation for this panel is a workshop taking place in June 2016. The Wenner-Gren Foundation has sponsored a workshop, “Revitalizing CoPAR for the Digital Age.” In the 1990s, the Council for the Preservation of Anthropological Records (CoPAR) was founded to help “anthropologists, librarians, archivists, information specialists and others preserve and provide access to the record of human diversity and the history of the discipline.” Over the past 20 years, the field of Anthropology has changed dramatically, as have the records anthropologists produce. Today, the preservation and stewardship of anthropological records face new challenges as anthropologists create records in many formats, both analog and digital, as expectations for immediate, digital access grow among users, and as collection managers face challenges of digitizing, preserving, and providing access to heterogeneous materials.

Abstracts should be submitted by email to Diana Marsh ( and Ricardo Punzalan ( by Friday, April 1 with the following information:

* Name 
* Institutional affiliation 
* Paper title 
* 250-word abstract 
* Contact information