In today’s information society the internet plays a vital communication role. The National Archives is a crucial player in this rapidly-changing information society. We have a very important mission to fulfill. The National Archives Act (V-2005) challenges us with the responsibility to ‘preserve the collective memory of the Maltese nation…’ This is not an easy task to fulfill.

During the last eighteen years the National Archives did an excellent job. We managed to equip three reading rooms and provide research services to a very diverse audience. We are now at the cross-roads of a very exciting challenge. We have to instill in the Public Service the vision of nation-wide effective records management. We cannot preserve the collective memory of the nation if our records remain rotting away in hidden basements.

The second challenge is electronic records. We are here to preserve all public records whether they are e-mails, films, audio-tapes or other media that will be created in the future. In so doing there is a learning curve we have to go through.

This challenging vision can only be fulfilled if we work in close collaboration with all stakeholders. The step we are now taking with the setting of the web-site aims to inform but also build bridges with our audience.

Charles J Farrugia