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COVID-19: The duty to document does not cease in a crisis, it becomes more essential

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This statement was developed by ICA and the International Conference of Information Commissioners, supported by ARMA International, CODATADigital Preservation CoalitionResearch Data AllianceUNESCO Memory of the World and World Data Service.

It is built on three principles:

  1. Decisions must be documented,
  2. Records and data should be secured and preserved in all sectors, and
  3. The security, preservation, and access to digital content should be facilitated during the shutdown

The signatories hope the archives, records, data and allied communities will support the statement and join us in underscoring the importance of the duty to document, now and for the future.

COVID-19: The duty to document does not cease in a crisis, it becomes more essential.

We, the signatories of this statement, call on governments, businesses, and research institutions around the world to document their decisions and transactions now and for the future. Building on the UNESCO communique ‘Turning the threat of COVID-19 into an opportunity for greater support to documentary heritage’ and reinforcing the call that decision-makers in the public and private sectors recognise the value of records management and archives, the statement has three calls to action.

Link to the statement on the ICA website:

Read the statement in English

Read the statement in French