Loading Events

« All Events

  • This event has passed.

Annual OHV symposium

June 20, 2021 @ 10:00 am - 1:00 pm

Plan or perish: Ensuring the survival of community oral histories

How can we make sure the stories of local communities recorded by oral historians survive the ravages of time? This online Oral History Victoria (OHV) symposium is an opportunity to explore and discuss the challenges facing communities and oral historians in preserving recorded interviews for the future.

Community oral histories are an incredibly rich resource, but we risk losing many due to:

  • physical deterioration
  • unstable formats
  • technological change (new formats)
  • private archives remaining unknown to others
  • overly narrow (or undefined) conditions of access or re-use.

Join us to hear about:

  • the challenges involved in preserving existing audio recordings,
  • collections policies in institutions holding oral history collections
  • what some communities and historians are doing to future-proof their interviews.

Participants will have the opportunity to submit a question for the speakers before the event. OHV is also keen to hear about any oral history recordings or collections out in the community that should be flagged for preservation, especially if they are at risk of imminent deterioration due to their format or storage. After the symposium, participants will be encouraged to do some detective work in their own communities and contribute to a survey of existing collections.


National Library of Australia (NLA) – Shirleene Robinson, Director, Curatorial and Collection Research (oral History & Manuscripts)

Portrait of Dr Shirleene RobinsonDr Shirleene Robinson is Director of Curatorial and Collection Research at the National Library of Australia, with responsibility for the Library’s oral history programme.
Shirleene also is an Honorary Associate Professor at Macquarie University and President of Sydney’s Pride History Group. Recent books include the co-authored texts, The Eye of the Storm: Volunteers and Australia’s Response to the HIV/AIDS Crisis and
Pride in Defence: the Australian Military and LGBTI Service Since 1945.

State Library Victoria (SLV) – Greg Gerrand, Senior Librarian and Jenelle Colston-Ing, Head of Collection Development and Description

Image of Greg Gerrand.

Greg Gerrand is a Senior Librarian at State Library Victoria, specialising in Victorian and Australian Collections within the Collection Curation and Engagement team. He has worked with original materials, including oral histories, at the State Library since 2006, and is a member of the National and State Libraries of Australia (NSLA) Oral History Network.



Image of Jenelle Colston
Jenelle Colston-Ing is the Head of Collection Development and Description at State Library Victoria. With over 15 years’ experience working in libraries, Jenelle oversees the overarching strategic activities relating to collection building and making the collections discoverable to library users.


Royal Historical Society of Victoria (RHSV) – Jillian Hiscock, Collections Manager / Volunteer Coordinator

Image of Jillian Hiscock sitting at a desk. Jillian qualified as a librarian at Melbourne University after doing a Bachelor of Arts at La Trobe University. She has had a career working in public and special libraries, and managing government department libraries and intranets. She ran the Department of Transport library which supported Heritage Victorian and the Planning portfolio, this in role particular has given her relevant experience in managing collections that span manuscripts, ephemera, books, images and non-print materials.

Hotham History Project – Lorna Hannan, chair

Image of Lorna HannanLorna Hannan OAM has lived in inner Melbourne since the 1960s and chairs the Hotham History Project which researches and presents aspects of the history of North and West Melbourne. She has wide experience in education and the performing arts and is one of a group who have recorded some memories of local family and working life in the 1930s.




Please book online via Eventbrite: https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/plan-or-perish-ensuring-the-survival-of-community-oral-histories-tickets-157152275687


June 20, 2021
10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Event Category: