State Records congratulates Barbara Reed on national Standards Australia award August 7, 2012


Barbara Reed at Standards Australia ceremony, 1 June 2012 (Barbara is fourth from the right)

We are extremely pleased to report that Barbara Reed’s enormous contribution to records management standards development has been officially recognised by Standards Australia. On 1 June 2012 Barbara was awarded the Meritorious Contribution Award (International) at ceremony in Melbourne.

Barbara has worked exceptionally hard over many years on the development of international records management standards. Having been one of the key developers of the Australian Standard on records management,  AS 4390, Barbara chaired the international working group that translated AS 4390 into the first ever international records management standard, ISO 15489-1:2001 Records management – Part 1: General and ISO/TR 15489-1:2001 Records management – Part 2: Guidelines.  ISO 15489 is now used by fifty countries across the world and has been translated into 15 languages.

More recently, Barbara made a tremendous contribution to the International Standards Organization ISO 23081 metadata series. These influential standards have been adopted by at least 15 countries. Barbara has also contributed to the development of the following Australian national standards and handbooks:

  • AS 5044 AGLS Metadata
  • AS 5090 Work process for recordkeeping, and
  • HB 5031 Records classification.

In the official award citation Standards Australia said:

“Many of the original ideas and concepts that are now part of the records management industry are directly attributable to Barbara’s vision and tenacity in making them happen. It is well acknowledged that Barbara is “the” industry expert on many aspects of records management.  She is the trusted and authoritative source for the industry and is often quoted in texts and articles as well as being the author of many original articles.  She is well respected in the industry.  This respect comes from all aspects of the public and private sectors (including many vendors of information management products) as well as the academic community, all of whom often seek her opinions and comments both professionally as well as from a knowledgeable peer and colleague.”

Here at State Records we think that Barbara’s work deserves acknowledgement because she, and the national and international committees she is part of, have done a tremendous amount to raise the profile of records management across the world, and to codify and formalise records management processes and requirements. These committees have worked hard to emphasise the high level and strategic role that records management should play in all organisations and to identify the unique role that records management serves in the broad information landscape.

Through their work these committees have helped to formally define what we as records managers can contribute to our organisations and the specific skills and values that we bring. The standards that they have developed have helped to legitimise and formalise our profession in many nations around the world.

But standards developers never sleep! Barbara told us that the ISO committee’s next big project involves reviewing ISO 15489 to ensure its ongoing relevance. The committee will also develop advice on records management risk, record conversion and migration, and possibly cloud storage. The committee will also continue to promote its new standard, ISO 30300: Management systems for records which outlines the business management methodologies and commitment needed to sustain strong organisational recordkeeping.

So congratulations to Barbara for receiving the recognition she deserves, and to all her Standards Australia and International Standards Organization colleagues on their achievements.

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