In response to a critical gap between providers of documentation information and the user community—identified through a series of outreach workshops by the ICOMOS/ISPRS Committee for Documentation of Cultural Heritage (CIPA)—the GCI, the International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS), and CIPA have formed the Recording, Documentation, and Information Management (RecorDIM) Initiative. This initiative is exploring ways to strengthen the documentation component of built heritage conservation through the development of tools and training and through improved communication between users and providers.

In March 2002, members of the RecorDIM Initiative convened a meeting of information users and providers—conservation specialists, cultural resource managers, and heritage program planners—for a roundtable discussion of heritage recording, documentation, and management. During the two-day meeting at the Getty Center, 23 experts from 12 countries discussed needs and strategies for improving communication between information users and providers.

From this meeting, a list of recommended areas of focus for the RecorDIM Initiative was developed. These include:

  • improving communication in documentation, recording, and information management;
  • integrating documentation, recording, and information management activities into the conservation process;
  • increasing resources for documentation;
  • defining, developing, and promoting documentation tools;
  • making available specific RecorDIM training/learning programs.

In each of these areas, specific strategies were also developed. The members of the RecorDIM Initiative will use these recommendations and strategies as a framework for future activities.

The GCI's involvement will focus on educational and training activities for the user community, on recording cultural heritage property—including the development of a handbook and guidelines. In addition, the GCI is working to develop an online resource center for the exchange of documentation recording information.

A summary report of the meeting's discussions and recommendations is available in the Conservation section of the Getty Web site. The report will also be distributed by ICOMOS and CIPA to their respective members.

The next roundtable meeting of the RecorDIM Initiative, organized by ICOMOS, is scheduled for December 2002 in Madrid.