The National Archives joins international Our Collections Matter sustainability initiative

The National Archives today can announce it has partnered with the International Centre for the Study of the Preservation and Restoration of Cultural Property (ICCROM) to help deliver the Our Collections Matter initiative. This comes one year after we announced our membership of the Climate Heritage Network (CHN).

Jeff James, Chief Executive and Keeper of The National Archives, said:

‘We take our role in safeguarding our collections for future generations very seriously and are playing our part in delivering the government’s sustainability targets – taking action to secure global net zero targets and keep 1.5°C within reach.

With the current global focus on climate change, there has never been a better or more appropriate time to discuss the action our sector has taken and can take going forward.’

ICCROM is an intergovernmental organisation (IGO) created by UNESCO in 1956 and established in Rome, Italy in 1959. It is concerned with the conservation of both movable and immovable heritage all around the world.

Our Collections Matter initiative is based around 17 Sustainable Development Goals which were adopted by all UN member states in 2015, as part of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Through this heritage organisations recognised that they have the potential to play a significant role in sustainable development and can contribute to the United Nations’ 2030 Agenda.

With over 200 resources in the Our Collections Matter online toolkit, this initiative will enable institutions across the world to access knowledge which will help them develop techniques to preserve their collections while at the same time becoming more sustainable.

The National Archives is currently trialling the toolkit as part of a number of projects led by our conservation team. In these projects, the toolkit will be used to identify resources that can help improve the sustainability of our collections care. In addition, we will provide feedback on our experiences of applying the toolkit to archival collections care and contribute to think-tank meetings. This will help expand and improve the toolkit and shape the training that is being developed to support implementation.

We’re delighted that, through this partnership, we will be able to work with other organisations to enable those in charge of heritage collections make concrete contributions towards sustainable development through conservation and other collections-based work.

To find out more about Our Collections Matter view the online toolkit here.

Tags: Climate Heritage Network, ICCROM, Our Collections Matter, Sustainable Development, unesco