Bundesarchiv Holds Hands-On Workshop for Micro-Archives at the Jewish Community of Novi Sad

EHRI Workshop in Novi Sad Serbia
Monday, 24 June, 2024

By Dora Komnenovic (Bundesarchiv)

Ever since the beginning of the project, EHRI (the European Holocaust Research Infrastructure) has been committed to enabling transnational Holocaust research by, among other things, integrating archival descriptions from institutions all over Europe, Israel and the United States. In recent years the scope of action has been broadened to include smaller archival collections that hold equally relevant materials into the research infrastructure, i.e. the EHRI Portal. The EHRI Portal offers access to information on Holocaust-related archival material held in institutions across Europe and beyond.

Archival practices for non-archivists

In line with this objective and as part of its overall outreach strategy involving micro-archives, EHRI sponsored a two-day archival workshop organized by the German Federal Archives (Bundesarchiv) in cooperation with the Jewish Community of Novi Sad from May 28-30, 2024. Directed at practitioners from Central, Eastern and Southern Europe working with Holocaust related holdings, the event offered an introduction into archival practices for non-archivists.

Novi Sad

Twelve participants from Croatia, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Moldova, Poland, Romania, Serbia and Slovenia gathered in Novi Sad, Serbia, to learn about the proper handling and storing of paper files, digitisation, archival description, user access and public relations. The program was complemented by talks on the history of the Jewish Community of Novi Sad, the EHRI project, Jewish heritage in the region of Vojvodina, as well as local initiatives in the field of Holocaust education.


Hands-on part

Participants highly appreciated the hands-on part of the workshop, which featured documents and photographs from the archive of the Jewish Community. By engaging with the documents, they had the opportunity to test their newly acquired knowledge and reflect upon the challenges an archivist faces when cataloguing documents. At the same time, they supported the archive of the Jewish Community with the organization of some of its materials.

Exploratory journey

Besides transferring know-how, the goal of this workshop was to bring EHRI and the EHRI Portal closer to micro-archival communities in Southeastern Europe. The seminar was in fact preceded by an exploratory journey aimed at strengthening cooperation with micro-archival institutions in the region and creating sustainable networks, which shall accompany EHRI on its way to establishing itself as an European Holocaust Research Consortium (ERIC).