Northwest Archivists, Inc.

Call for Proposals

The 2018 Northwest Archivists Annual Meeting will take place April 25-27, 2018 in Warm Springs, Oregon. This will be the first conference in recent years held in a federally-recognized Tribal nation. This year’s conference theme, Stewarding Collections, Engaging Communities, speaks to the role of archives within the larger ecosystem of cultural resource management. On a broader level, the theme asks us to consider how we, as archivists, care for collections to the benefit of present and future generations.

The Program Committee welcomes proposals on all aspects of archival practice and research. In light of this year’s theme, we are particularly interested in proposals on:

  • Encouraging diversity and increasing participation by a broader range of institutions

    • Community-based archives and Tribally-funded archives

    • Cultural heritage professionals who do not specifically identify as “archivists”

    • Serving communities under- or poorly represented by our collections

  • Impact of digital technology on our profession

    • In terms of how we steward collections

    • In terms of professional ethics

    • In terms of engagement and outreach

  • Collections preservation and management
    • Addressing issues of sustainability
    • Ethical management of problematic collections perhaps dealing with confidentiality, repatriation, or other challenging issues
  • Stewarding our profession
    • Creating opportunities for young professionals
    • Preserving institutional knowledge
  • Advocacy and raising awareness of existing funding sources
    • Grant-funded projects
    • Advocating for your institution or unit on an institutional, local, state, or federal level
    • Use of archives to promote social justice
  • Improving outreach and education
    • Engaging new users
    • Bridging different generations of users

We welcome proposals for sessions in traditional and nontraditional formats, including:

Traditional. An open session with 2-3 papers of about 15 minutes each and a comment and discussion period after the papers.


Panel Discussion. An open session with a panel of 3-4 individuals informally discussing a variety of theories or perspectives on the given topic.


Roundtable. An open discussion anchored by brief, 5-7 minute presentations. Active participation encouraged.

Lightning Talks. A fast-paced open session with many concise presentations delivered under a tight time limit.


Workshop. A limited enrollment for a full or half-day session that allows interaction and focused instruction with participants. Workshops usually teach or refine archival skills. Workshops will be held 4/25.


Single Presentation. You may submit an individual presentation directly to the Program Committee or use the NWA collaboration spreadsheet to find other presenters to form a full session.


Poster. A visual presentation about research, technology, or process that usually incorporates both text and images. Poster presenters provide additional information and answer questions asked by those viewing the poster.


Demonstration. A session demonstrating a technology, skill, or process. Please select Workshop (see above) for sessions requiring limited attendance due to supplies or focussed attention by the session leader.


Entertainment. This may include film screenings, musical and/or theatrical performances, etc.

Other. Please feel free to submit proposals that do not match any of the above. Describe the basic premise of the format  and any logistical requirements. Also list any online resources that describe your session.

The committee welcomes proposals  from anyone involved with archives or allied professions, including staff and volunteers, community organizers, researchers, creators and donors, and academics. We especially encourage students and new professionals to share your fresh perspectives with us.

DEADLINE for submission is January 15th, 2018. Please use the online submission form to submit your proposal at

    Please contact Colleen Needham (Communications Chair) with any questions. 

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