21.01.2011 -

UNESCO funds survey of Broadcast Archives in the Southern African region

The Southern African Broadcasting Association (SABA) will carry out a survey of the Broadcasting archives of 13 African countries including Angola, Lesotho, Namibia and Swaziland.

The main objective of the survey is to determine the extent of content preservation, digitization projects, material at risk and general archive practices within broadcast institutions in Southern Africa, within the broader goal of ensuring that sound and audiovisual collections are properly stored and preserved for future generations.


For that purpose, visits to each of the Broadcast Archives will take place in the first semester of 2011. These visits will aim at establishing contact and getting an understanding of the archive practices, preservation of content, accessibility and re-use of content, plans to digitize or existing digitization projects and other relevant issues in the different broadcasters in 13 African countries, including Angola, Lesotho, Namibia, Swaziland and the Democratic Republic of Congo. The information obtained as a result of those country visits will nourish the content of the final report which will be of great value towards the preservation of the regions' sound and audiovisual heritage and for ensuring that there are coherent archive practices in the region.


This study lies under the activities of the Broadcast Archive Forum which was established in 2008 under the auspices of SABA as a sub-committee of the association. The Forum was established in order to act as an organ for ensuring the preservation of audiovisual collections for future generations.


UNESCO is funding the realization of this study by SABA within the framework of its strategy of promoting access to information and knowledge for building knowledge societies. UNESCO supports actions to promote and broaden access to information by organization, digitalization, management and preservation of information, given that archives (as well as libraries) are considered as essential components of any strategy aimed at improving information access.

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