Research projects

August 2016 – current

Research Project Title:

Emergent Archives and Systems of Memory-Making: Street Art Online

“How does the Mediated Recordkeeping Model work when applied to multiple online sources for personal and community memory-making”

Purpose: The purpose of this project is to to explore the processes and experiences of individual and collective memory-making online. Includes exploration of challenges including private, corporate ownership and control of social media systems and content, and metadata automatically and manually generated and assigned.

Aim: The goal is to apply the Mediated Recordkeeping Model to another space and context to explore more deeply continuum theory, plus mediated memories and memory-making. This research will also help to refine the definitions developed and communicated about memory-making and emergent archives. The goal is to develop a context entity mapping of the domain to generate a network visualisation. The visualisation will be examined for potential related to archival description, selection and access. There are also Possibilities for interface design based on context mapping for personal and community memory-making related to various entities over time.

Current activities: 

Phase One:

  • Documenting all spaces where street art is documented and communicated with a specific focus on the use of Instagram and other social media.
  • Documentation includes exploring:
    • Who is interested in street art? (individuals, organizations, institutions, governments etc.)
    • Where and how people communicate about street art? (virtually, physically, technologies, types of communication, systems of signification)
    • Are these activities memory-making?
    • Are these spaces emergent archives?
  • What are the context entities?


May 2016 – current

Research Project Title:

designing Online Graduate Masters Courses

“How is it possible to design effective a graduate education foundational archival course for the online environment?”

Purpose: The purpose of this project is to explore how graduate education addresses and adapts to change, specifically technological change, over time.

While there is a distinct discourse around what is core archival education, there is a significant lack of literature on pedagogy in the archival discipline or how to teach students “the archival mind” effectively.  Additionally, there is not much written about or research into learning outcomes, competencies and online design for courses in the archival discipline. There also exist several existing and emerging discussions around three main areas of interest:

  • diversity, literacies and competencies in relation to digital technologies;
  • global archival curriculum and addressing reflexivity and inclusion with standardization;
  • principles and activity-based pedagogical in a trans and multidisciplinary environment.

Aim: This research includes addressing multiple needs for graduate education, including those of students, potential employers, university standards, professional standards and competencies as well as graduate level educators. It also addresses issues related to how to assess online education in archival foundations courses, including how to assess collaboration, student needs, and professional community needs. This includes how to measure quality, effectiveness and success with a particular focus on expectations and competencies. Additionally, this research explores the use of technologies and changing social and academic expectations.

Current activities:

Phase One:

  • Identification of core requirements for a foundations course at Kent State University – completed.
  • Analysis of core competencies from various relevant professional organizations – completed.
  • Exploration of literature related to online pedagogy – completed.
  • Exploration of the literature related to measuring expectations – in progress.
  • Design of evaluation instrument – in progress.


November 2015 – current

Research Project Title:

Exploring web archiving concepts and frameworks

“Who is capturing web content as cultural heritage, how is it being managed and what challenges still remain.”

Purpose:  The purpose of this research project is to explore the practice and theory of web archiving to identify gaps and opportunities in relation to selection, description and access to web archives.

Aim:  The goal of the project is to identify the current conceptual and practical challenges facing archivists working with web content and digital archives. The survey instrument was designed with the Mediated Recordkeeping Model in mind.

Current activities:

Phase One:

Phase Two:

  • This phase will explore the application of theory in more depth with a research partner. The focus will be on addressing the key findings from the research, which included issues related to adequate documentation and communication of how web archiving is done (complete system, not just parts). This will aid in potential future design, re-design, evaluation and justification of web archiving programs.
  • Looking for partner institutions and organizations for funding application. – on hold

September 2015 – current

Research partner: Dr. Heather Soyka

Research collaborators: The Records Continuum Research Group

Research Project Title:

The evolution and influence of the records continuum model

“How has the records continuum model, and more broadly, continuum informatics influenced scholarly and professional communities”

Purpose: To examine the impact of the records continuum model, an approach to recordkeeping developed by Monash researchers in the early 1990s.


  • To identify the body of knowledge, including key concepts and language developed by continuum scholars and practitioners.
  • To identify how this field of knowledge has impacted on and influenced scholarly and professional communities.
  • To identify how this field of knowledge is understood, adopted, adapted and rejected by scholarly and professional communities.

Current activities:

Phase One:

  • Articulation and communication of the field of community informatics – commenced. Conference presentation on Continuum Informatics and the Emergent Archive. See also publications page.
  • Identification of all continuum models that show an extension, variation or other kind of interpretation of the Records Continuum Model – completed.
  • Content analysis of continuum writings – in progress.
    • What is meant by systems?
    • What is meant by activity?
    • What are the theoretical contributions?
  • Citation analysis of continuum writings – in progress.
    • What is the influence of continuum ideas (authors, topics)?
    • How are continuum ideas understood (concepts)?
    • How are continuum models applied (concepts, authors, topics)?

Phase Two:

  • Interviews with creators/founders of the records continuum model – in development (funding application in progress).
    • What is the evolution of continuum ideas?
    • How does someone identify as a continuum theorist?
    • What does the continuum bring to archival theory?
    • What is archival theory?
  • Interviews with people self-identified as continuum theorists – in development.


Research Assistant at Monash University working on development of the Records Continuum Research Group website including collection and analysis of scholars and their papers, as well as migration of content.

PhD Research 2008 – 2015

Research Project Title: 

Culture in the Continuum: YouTube, Small Stories & Memory-Making

My PhD thesis was ratified by Monash in April 2015.

The first two chapters on my thesis are available here (may require sign in to the website).

The key outcome, the Mediated Recordkeeping Model, is available to view here.  Check out my first publication on it here. Broadly, the Mediated Recordkeeping Model is a conceptual model that was “designed to be used as a conceptual tool to help explore, develop and assess the complex and interwoven contexts involved in cultural heritage formation.”* My goal for the model is to it to be used to help make sense of how and why people interact with recorded information – the purposes, the values, and the nature of memory as it is created, shared, accessed and managed over time in various and complex ways, including in response to technologies, other people and entities, and various mechanisms, systems and tools that help to enable and empower, as well as disempower and make hidden.

Another major outcome of the research was a Research Design Model, available here and also discussed in a book chapter (forthcoming).

*p. 3. Gibbons, L.(2015). Continuum informatics and the emergent archive. CIRN Community Informatics Conference.


Research Assistant at Monash University undertaking research and analysis, and project development to support the Centre for Organisational and Social Informatics (COSI) research & education agenda. Included content development for presentations & other communications as well as administration of presentations and events.