Memory, Identity and Authenticity

School of Humanities, University of Dundee

28-30 April 2020, Dundee

Call for Papers

The conference will be preceded, on the evening of 27 April, by a panel debate by invited guests on the conference themes to celebrate the 15thanniversary of CAIS and will be followed by a wine reception.

Keynote speakers

Dr Laura Miller, Independent Archival Consultant, Canada

Dr Elizabeth Shepherd, Professor of Archives and Record Management, UCL 


 A History Scotland Lecture, in association with The Centre for Scottish Culture, will be given by Dr Fiona Watson at 6pm on 28 April at the University on the theme ‘For Glory, Riches and Honours: the Rocky Road to the Declaration of Arbroath’

The Centre for Archive & Information Studies (CAIS), in association with the University of Dundee Archive Services invites proposals for the fifth multi-disciplinary international conference, Memory, Identity and Authenticity.

The conference is part of the CAIS Investigating the Archive: Memory & Identity programme and will be held over three days on 28-30 April 2020. The Organising Committee welcomes proposals for papers and panels (3 speakers – 20-minute papers) dealing with aspect of the conference theme, Memory, Identity and Authenticity.

We are particularly interested in what authenticity means and whether it is still a valid concept in the recordkeeping sector.  Areas of particular interest are:

  • Truth, post truth, fake news and recordkeeping
  • Can memory be authentic?
  • Remembering and documenting trauma
  • Is authenticity challenged in a digital environment?

Other topics will also be considered.

Proposals should be emailed to Dr Patricia Whatley (, Caroline Brown ( and Dr Craig Gauld ( no later than Friday 20 December, 2019. 

All proposals must contain:

  • a) Title of paper or panel. Panel proposals should contain titles for each paper within the panel
  • b) Name of speaker(s)   
  • c) Affiliation of speaker(s) [as it will appear on delegate badge]
  • d) Address(es) of speakers(s)
  • e) E-mail address(es) of speaker(s)
  • g) Abstract for each paper proposed (max 300 words per paper)
  • h) Short biography containing employment (if appropriate), research interests, publications (max 200 words)
  • i) Audio-visual equipment required

All abstracts should be submitted in English. All submissions will be reviewed by the Conference Committee and those which are accepted will be notified within four weeks of the submission date. This conference will be relevant to theorists, archivists, philosophers, historians, literary critics and other discipline specific scholars, postgraduate students and post-doctoral researchers, with the aim of encouraging debate and developing a critical understanding of these issues. In particular, we see the Investigating the Archive project as breaking down barriers between academic disciplines and challenging the insularity that sometimes characterises those working with archives. All speakers are required to register for the conference and will not be added to the programme until registration is completed. Please note, the conference organisers cannot support travel and accommodation costs.

Conference registration fees:

  • £140      Full conference (3 days) – Includes morning and afternoon coffee and lunch
  • £48         1 day – Includes morning and afternoon coffee and lunch
  • £35         Conference dinner, 28 April, Apex Hotel

Five bursaries of £140, which will cover the cost of registration and the conference dinner, have been funded by the Arts & Humanities Research Institute, University of Dundee. They are available for those who cannot be funded by their institutions. Application information will be available on the conference web site.

Investigating the Archive: Memory & Identity project

The ‘Investigating the Archive’ project, initially funded by the Royal Society of Edinburgh, has since 2008 held five international conferences on the overarching themes of Memory & Identity. The events have been inter and cross-disciplinary in nature and have been enhanced by different methodological outlooks on the archive, demonstrating the benefits of scholars and practitioners working together in a productive dialogue or tension.

Previous conferences:

  • 2008 The Philosophy of the Archive
  • 2010 Memory, Identity and the Archival Paradigm
  • 2012 Democratising or Privileging: the future of access to archives
  • 2014 Memories, Communities and Identities
  • 2016 Activation and Impact (in collaboration with the Forum for Archives and Records Management Education and Research (FARMER)
  • 2018 Memory, Identity and Trust

The School of Humanities, University of Dundee:

The Centre for Archive & Information Studies:

Centre for Scottish Culture:

Accommodation and travel:

A limited number of rooms will be available at the Apex Hotel for conference delegates at the conference rate. Early booking is advised.

In addition, a wide range of accommodation is available in Dundee close to the Apex Hotel. More information will be available on the conference web site when registration opens in December. Dundee is on the main east coast rail line from London. Regular tram and bus links from Edinburgh Airport to Edinburgh Waverley and Haymarket stations link to Dundee. Direct daily flights between Dundee and London Stansted are also available.

The Apex Hotel is close to the new V&A Museum of Design Dundee on the waterfront, which opened in 2018. The Antarctic steamship, Discovery, is next to the V&A.