Public Affairs and Public Relations Records Disposition Schedule

The dispositions in this schedule pertain to records created in typical circumstances; any unique situations may require consultation with the Archives and Information Management Team. The disposition actions described in the schedule apply only to inactive and semi-active records; active or working records should remain available and on-premises until they are no longer needed, at which time the instructions in the schedule are to be applied.

See Transferring or Destroying Records for next steps in carrying out a disposition. See the glossary for definitions of many of the terms found in the schedules.

Series Title Series Description Disposition Likely Offices of Record
Calendar of Events Calendars of events and other published schedules. Originals: Transfer 2 copies to Archives. Copies: Destroy when no longer needed. OVS, Public affairs offices, Education offices
Committee Records Pertaining to SI and unit committees. Materials include agendas, minutes, reports, by-laws, charters, and related materials. Originals: Transfer to Archives. Copies: Destroy when no longer needed. Committee chairs
Conference and Symposia Records Pertaining to conferences and symposia developed, sponsored, or hosted by SI. Materials include correspondence, invitations, websites, images, audiovisual recordings, logistical information, brochures, handouts, budget information, and ephemera. Originals: Transfer to Archives. Weed logistical information. Copies: Destroy when no longer needed. SCLDA, Education offices, Programmatic offices, Other organizing units
Contracting Officer's Technical Representative (COTR) Records Pertaining to COTR's interaction with the contractor and site representative. Materials include email and paper correspondence related to work authorizations, problems, delays, modifications, and terminations as well as reports and progress plans. Originals: The COTR should work with the Contracting Officer to determine which records should become part of the permanent contract file maintained by OCon&PPM. Destroy records not required by OCon&PPM 6 years, 3 months after close of account. Copies: Destroy when no longer needed. COTR
Contracts Pertaining to individuals, vendors, and services, including copies of contracts, correspondence, statements of work, project bids, and price quotes. Originals: Transfer to Archives. Copies: Destroy 6 years, 3 months after close of account. OCon&PPM, SE
Departmental Files Pertaining to the administration and activities of individual departments within a museum or other large unit. Materials include memoranda, reports, meeting materials, notes, and related materials. Originals: Transfer to Archives. Copies: Destroy when no longer needed. Department heads/chairs, Administrators who oversee several departments
Director's Subject Files Pertaining to the files of the Director and other upper-level staff of museums, research centers, and SI-wide programmatic and administrative offices. Materials include correspondence, email, memoranda, reports, meeting materials, professional activity files, notes, and related materials documenting overall administration of the unit, professional outreach, development, public affairs, and relations with other SI units and non-SI organizations. Originals: Transfer to Archives. Copies: Destroy when no longer needed. Secretary, Under secretaries, Directors/deputy directors
Event Files (Planning) Pertaining to the development and planning of special events. Materials include correspondence, memoranda, notes, planning documents, logistical files, sample invitations, guest lists, and ephemera. Originals: Destroy when 10 years old. Copies: Destroy when no longer needed. OSEP, Special events offices/coordinators
Event Files (Recordings) Photographic or audiovisual recordings of significant events and activities. Originals: Transfer to Archives. Copies: Destroy when no longer needed. OSEP, Special events offices/coordinators, Central/unit public affairs offices, Education offices, Imaging units
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Event Files (Major Events Planning) Pertaining to the development and planning of significant events such as large exhibition openings, visits by major figures, or unique events. Materials include correspondence, invitations, remarks, ephemera, catering proposals, samples, logistical information, and mailing lists. Originals: Significant correspondence, invitations, remarks, and ephemera - Transfer to Archives. All other materials - Destroy when 10 years old. Copies: Destroy when no longer needed. OSEP, Special events offices/coordinators
Exhibition Records Pertaining to the design, execution, and installation of exhibitions. Materials include correspondence, memoranda, concepts, proposals, scripts, label texts, catalogs, promotional materials, clippings, installation photographs, floor plans, drawings, graphics, checklists, schedules, visitor comment books, notes, and related materials. Originals: Transfer to Archives. Copies: Destroy when no longer needed. SITES, OEC, Curatorial offices, Exhibition design offices, Public affairs offices, Publications units, Directors/deputy directors, Programmatic offices
Exhibition Working Files Pertaining to the research and planning of exhibitions. Materials include logistical files, research materials, object photographs, drafts, accounting files, travel files, copies of materials created by other offices, design samples, and related materials. Originals and Copies: Destroy when no longer needed. SITES, OEC, Curatorial offices, Exhibition design offices, Public affairs offices, Publications units, Directors/deputy directors, Programmatic offices
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Filming Requests Pertaining to requests to film SI facilities, collections, and staff by the outside media. Materials include applications, email correspondence, and a master grid of all requests received. Originals: Destroy applications and correspondence 7 years after request is granted or denied. Transfer master grid to Archives for permanent retention. Copies: Destroy when no longer needed. OPA
Lectures and Speeches Pertaining to lectures, speeches, and other presentations given by high-level administrators and subject specialists to large audiences. Materials include texts, audiovisual materials, notes, programs, and related materials. Originals: Transfer to Archives. Copies: Destroy when no longer needed. Secretary, Under secretaries, Directors/deputy directors, Unit heads, Curators, Scientists
Marketing Materials Print, broadcast, and internet marketing materials promoting exhibitions, programs, events, and other aspects of SI. Materials include brochures, flyers, clippings, printouts, and other final copies. Materials do not include signage. Originals: Transfer to Archives. Copies: Destroy when no longer needed. OVS, Public affairs offices, Business units
Policies and Handbooks Policy statements, directives, and handbooks, as well as supporting documentation of their development. Supporting documentation includes correspondence, memoranda, meeting notes, and reports. Originals: Transfer to Archives. Copies: Destroy when no longer needed. OPMB, Central administrative offices, Other units issuing policies and handbooks
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Press Records Pertaining to materials created by the press. Materials include clippings, media segments, media reports, and related materials. Originals: Transfer to Archives. Copies: Destroy when no longer needed. OPA, Unit public affairs offices
Press Releases Includes press releases, press kits, and fact sheets distributed to the media. Originals: Transfer to Archives. Copies: Destroy when no longer needed. OPA, Unit public affairs offices
Professional Activities Files Pertaining to professional conferences, symposia, and workshops in which staff formally participated as a speaker or organizer. Materials include papers, lecture materials, photographs of colleagues, conference programs, correspondence, agendas, minutes, proceedings, and related materials. Materials related to conferences in which staff only participated as an attendee are not considered to be institutional records and are not subject to disposition requirements. Originals: Transfer to Archives. Weed logistical and travel files. Copies: Destroy when no longer needed. Individual staff
Public Inquiries Routine inquiries about specific objects, museum collections, and SI in general. Materials include incoming and outgoing correspondence. Originals: Destroy 3 years after date of final response. Copies: Destroy when no longer needed. Registrar/collections management offices, Curators, Scientists, Public affairs offices, OVS
Publication Records Pertaining to materials created during the production of a publication. Materials include manuscripts, drafts, proofs, galleys, layouts, editor's files, correspondence, memoranda, camera-ready art, and accounting files. Originals and Copies: Destroy when no longer needed. Publications offices, Education offices, Public affairs offices
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Publications Regular and special publications, in paper or electronic form, published by SI units. This includes magazines, newsletters, brochures, annual reports, and other published materials. Originals: Transfer 2 copies to Archives. Copies: Destroy when no longer needed. Publications offices, Education offices, Public affairs offices, Curatorial offices, Programmatic offices
Publicity Reference and Working Files Pertaining to files created in response to the day-to-day publicity work. Materials include drafts and copies of press releases, fact sheets, and other publicity documents; correspondence with press and SI staff; and informational files about SI and SI units. Originals and Copies: Destroy when no longer needed. OPA, Unit public affairs offices
Visitor Comments Pertaining to visitor feedback. Materials include forms and surveys as well as statistics or reports created based upon the comments and formal responses to comments. Originals: Transfer to Archives. Copies: Destroy when no longer needed. OVS, Public affairs offices, Education offices, Curatorial offices, Directors/deputy directors
Website and Social Network Registry Listing of websites, social media/network accounts, and mobile applications maintained by all SI units. Originals: Transfer to Archives. Copies: Destroy when no longer needed. SIA
Website Records Pertaining to unit's websites as well as its official presence on social networking sites. Materials include websites, blogs, feeds, profiles, and related materials as well as documentation about the websites. Originals: Public websites and blogs to be periodically crawled by Archives. Social media accounts and intranets will be individually appraised by Archives based upon content. Copies and defunct websites: Consult with Archives. Webmasters, Social media practitioners, Other staff responsible for maintaining websites
Website Statistics Statistical reports pertaining to website and social media traffic. Originals: Transfer reports documenting long-term trends to Archives for permanent retention. Weed reports documenting short-term trends. Copies: Destroy when no longer needed. OCIO, Webmasters, Social media practitioners
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