ISAD(G) : synthesis or innovation in archival description traditions
Over the past years the International Council on Archives (ICA) has developed the "International Standards for Archival Description" ISAD(G). The last draft of the ISAD(G) was adopted by the ICA in 1993 and was revised at the 14th International Congress on Archives held in Seville, in September 2000. However, at present the ISAD(G) is not yet well known and not often used in countries with strong national archival traditions. After giving an overview on traditional definitions of archival description, my research analyses the current implementation of the ISAD(G) in North America, in some European countries and in the institutions of the European Union. The application of ISAD(G) with its innovative key-elements represents a starting-point for future developments of archival description in the international debate among archivists. This research deals also with the difficult implementation of these standards in databases through the examination of several case studies. It also looks at the impact of electronic records on traditional archival theory and on archival description techniques. The thesis analyses the impact of the Internet on archival theory and practice, and looks at the Internet's challenge to access policies through the replacement of traditional finding aids. In the conclusions the thesis analyses the ICA's revision of the "International Standard Archival Authority Record (Corporate Bodies, Persons and Families)", ISAAR(CPF), in its relationship to the implementation of ISAD(G) in view of possible outcomes for future techniques of archival description, and makes proposals for future research.