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Conference Report: FIAT/IFTA World Conference

Conference Report by Michael Vielhaber

From September 28th to October 2nd, Italy’s public broadcaster RAI hosted the 2011 FIAT/IFTA World Conference, which took place in the beautiful city of Turin. The Fédération Internationale des Archives de Télévision / International Federation of Television Archives is an organisation that intends to promote co-operation amongst television and multimedia archives and libraries, and all those engaged in the preservation and exploitation of moving image and recorded sound materials. The central theme of this year’s FIAT/IFTA conference was The Audiovisual Archive Reinvented.

Picture by Andy O’Dwyer

The Conference started with a PrestoPRIME tutorial, which focused on the European competency centre PrestoCentre, which supports audiovisual archives with information, resources and technological support. Furthermore, several PrestoPRIME tools were introduced. Particularly relevant to EUscreen was the presentation by Dana Mustata (Utrecht University, NL) within the plenary session Curating Content, where she spoke on  EUscreen and European TV history.

The overall conference structure existed out of four main themes:

  1. Technology & Innovation
  2. Marketing & Sales
  3. Knowledge & Academy
  4. Right & Management

An absolute highlight was the 2011 FIAT/IFTA Archive Achievement Awards Evening, in which Gabriele Salvatores’s film “1960″ was screened. It won the award for ‘best audiovisual production using archive’. 1960 was produced by RAI Cinema in collaboration with RAI Teche and Offside. Equally worth to mention were the plenary sessions on National Archive Strategies, and the workshops From mass digitization to mass content enrichment and Beyond the file: Containers for Archive Complexity – just to mention a few.

Under the title Making Audiovisual Collections Interoperable, Johan Oomen (Sound and Vision, NL), Marco Rendina (Cinecittà Luce, IT) and Michael Vielhaber (ORF, AT) presented a workshop on Europeana and EUscreen in the Chorus Hall of the conference location. Johan chaired the workshop and outlined the EUscreen initiative within the framework of the Europeana project. After his initial overview, Marco explained the workflow in which the audiovisual content from the individual providers  are turned into publicly viewable items on the EUscreen portal. Michael then presented on the functionalities of the actual beta-version of EUscreen and tried to stress the multiple benefits and added values of such an international cooperation.

Picture by Andy O’Dwyer

Full conference coverage is available on the FIAT/IFTA website.