I have 25 years experience in records management as a practitioner, trainer, consultant, podcaster, commentator, researcher and cartoonist.
I am co-founder of the IRMS podcast and have recorded issues (available on the IRMS website) on topics such as artificial intelligence, analytics, eDiscovery and SharePoint.
I have experience as a records management practioner, consultant and trainer in spheres as diverse as:
- engineering – in between 2014 and 2016 I developed records retention schedules and the records management policy for EDF’s Hinkley Point C nuclear power station project. I had earlier developed records retention schedules to the UK’s National Air Traffic Service; and built a records classification for the Civil Aviation Authority’s first implementation of an Open Text electronic records management system;
- diplomacy and international relations – I have provided advice on records management for the International Committee of the Red Cross, worked as archivist for the European External Action Service and facilitated records management workshops for the UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office and for the NATO Archives Committee;
- parliaments and governments: I have provided advice on SharePoint implementation for the Scottish Parliament and on electronic records management system strategy for the UK Parliament. I have provided records management training for thousands of staff at the Bank of England, the British Council and the European Commission.
I am a regular speaker on the records management conference circuit in the UK and Europe (with occasional presentations in the US).
I am currently investigating archival policy towards email in a doctoral research project based at Loughborough University’s Centre for Information Management and sponsored by The UK National Archives. The Records Management Journal published the first article from the project in 2019. The paper is entitled The defensible deletion of government email. It compares rival records management and information governance approaches towards email. The paper attempts to establish what proportion of an email account is needed as a record, and explores the question of whether it is feasible to capture that proportion of email into separate record systems, or whether it is better to manage it within the email account itself. An Open access version of the paper is available from the Loughborough University digital repository.
Over the coming year (2020/21) I will be researching the relationship between archival theory and records management policies towards email; and exploring the question of whether or not email accounts are a viable and useful vehicle for the application of retention rules to correspondence. The research is rendered (even) more interesting by the context of the rise in use of artificial intelligence/machine learning, and the rise of alternative communications channels to email.