Archival Science

, Volume 18, Issue 2, pp 143–163 | Cite as

Traveling through: exploring doctoral demographics in archival studies

  • Sarah A. Buchanan
  • Jonathan Dorey
  • Kathryn Pierce Meyer
Original Paper


The growth of archival studies programs has prompted archival scholars to establish an international network for supporting collaborative research, curriculum development, and pedagogy. Doctoral education is key to the sustainability of such programs and the continuation of the network over time. We carried out longitudinal research to survey the population of doctoral students attending one or more Archival Education and Research Institutes (AERI), an annual meeting first held in 2009. Building on prior research on graduate archival education, we gathered demographic and qualitative data about doctoral students specializing in archival studies who are based in several countries including the USA. We sought to assess attendee motivations, guide conference planning, and help advance overall AERI objectives. Our study provides a baseline understanding of the disciplinary backgrounds, research directions, and specific professional development activities that doctoral students in archival studies pursued around the globe from 2013 to 2015. This paper argues that doctoral education should continue to be a particular subject of archival research and indicates how archival students’ range of academic interests is diversifying and strengthening the scholarly community.


Graduate education Archival studies Doctoral students Survey methodology Academic networks 



Thank you to our participant community and to Patricia Galloway for serving as our faculty sponsor and advising our work. Earlier versions of this paper were presented at the ALISE Annual Meeting in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on 22 January 2014, and the 2013 AERI in Austin, Texas, on 19 June. We thank the attendees there for constructive feedback, and we dedicate this article to the memory of Mary E. Choquette. This research was generously supported by the US Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), Grant Numbers RE-02-08-0008-08 and RE-02-11-0032-11. The datasets generated during and/or analyzed during the current study are available from the corresponding author on reasonable request.


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Copyright information

© This is a U.S. Government work and not under copyright protection in the US; foreign copyright protection may apply 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of MissouriColumbiaUSA
  2. 2.School of Information StudiesMcGill UniversityMontréalCanada
  3. 3.School of InformationUniversity of Texas at AustinAustinUSA

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