The Electronic Documents Archive

Countries

Poland

Policy areas

Organisation name Head Office of Polish State Archives

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Contact person: Joanna Chojecka, Director of the Department of Archival Activity Popularization in the Head Office of Polish State Archives

The Electronic Documents Archive system (ade.gov.pl) is the answer to the need of preserving archival material of great historical value for future generations. It secures this part of the national archive collection and then makes it available to the public.

In more depth, the project aimed at storing electronic documents securely, transferring archival materials in electronic form to state archives by institutions and individuals. This ensures easy access to information on the resources stored in the system and the adaptation of the state archives to the needs of modern society. In other words, the operations of the Polish national archives have been adjusted to the needs of a modern society and a knowledge-based economy.

The so-called ADE project is easy to use, but also a novel and innovative tool on a European scale, which completes the missing link in Poland’s digitisation chain. It was addressed to all state archives and entities comprising the public administration, the non-state sector and individuals. Thanks to its implementation, the level of computerisation was increased, not only regarding digitisation of the overall public administration, but also undertaking such activities in the private sector. This initiative allowed widespread availability and high quality of services for all citizens.

Until the launch of the ADE system, there was no comprehensive solution like this one in Poland in the scope of receiving, storing and securing archival materials in electronic form. There were only substitute and temporary solutions enabling the provisional preservation of such documentation, and they were not universally used. The new system adapts the functionalities responsible for receiving and making the archival materials available to the legal conditions and the specific nature of the entities that transfer the documents to the national archives. This makes it possible to acquire archival materials from various entities which may not even meet the conditions regarding the organisation and handling of electronic documents. This solution is very flexible and makes it possible to adapt the solutions that have been worked out to the accepted legal and organisational solutions found in various countries, and to their specific character.

The experience gained during the implementation of the project may be successfully applied and taken advantage of in other EU countries. This is especially relevant to those which, like Poland, have undergone transformation from the communist system to a free market economy. There is a similarity in their legal solutions in the scope of safeguarding their national archival resources.

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