Paul Conway (archivist) - Career and Significance To Preservation

Career and Significance To Preservation

Conway began his career in October, 1977, when he joined the staff of the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library as an archivist and worked there for 10 years. Between 1987 and 1989, Conway worked for the Society of American Archivists as a Preservation Program Officer. From January 1990 to May 1992, he worked for the National Archives and Records Administration in various research positions. It was here that he conducted research on the Use of Archives and a review of how government agencies implement digital imaging and optical disk technology. Conway also served successfully as Preservation Program Officer for the Society of American Archivists in Chicago in 1988 and 1989. During this period, he carried out a nationwide survey of archival preservation programs. For more than 20 years, Conway has been involved with the Society in which he is now a Fellow.

From January 1997 to 2001, Conway headed the Preservation Department at Yale University Library. While at Yale, Conway held several administrative positions and managed digital research and development projects, including (1) Project Open Book; (2) a planning project exploring the complexities of guaranteeing long-term access to e-journal content produced by commercial publishers; and (3) an exploration of the potential value of e-book content to library course reserve programs. While at Yale, Paul developed a framework for understanding preservation in the digital context by creating a bridge from the five core principles of traditional preservation practice.

Prior to coming to University of Michigan, Conway led the library Information Technology programs and services at Duke University from August 2001 to August 2006, as director for information technology services and for digital asset initiatives. At Duke, Conway focused on developing a digital service for provision and preservation of digital resources to serve the university community. From September 2006 to date, Conway is Associate Professor at the University of Michigan, School of Information.

His impact on the archival profession is also realized in his career as a successful educator. His extensive experience in administration of archives and the practice of preservation give him a practical approach to teaching as evidenced in his courses. Among the courses he has developed and taught over the past decade cover preservation management, archival approaches to digital content management, and digital preservation. He has also conducted several specialized workshops and seminars on information technology issues. From August 2001 to 2006, he was an Adjunct Associate Research and Teaching Professor at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. He also was an Adjunct Associate Professor of Public Policy Studies and Faculty Director for Curriculum Development at Duke from July 2005 – August 2006, where he developed a curriculum for first years, "Game2know,". From 1996 to 2006, Conway worked with the Society of American Archivists as an Instructor. He was involved in Designing and teaching full-day workshops on digital imaging technology, including definitions of terms, system requirements, preservation and access issues, project planning, and funding.

Conway has published widely on digital preservation issues, archival users and use of archival information. His contribution to the preservation literature is in form of books, articles in peer-reviewed journals, book chapters, book reviews and conference papers. He is also serving on the American Archivist Editorial Board,2006-2012.

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