Collections not used are useless collections. All too often, loss of collection utility is a result of storage design – disorganization that makes it impossible to find things; poor quality storage materials that do not facilitate access or can contribute to deterioration; or ill-conceived housings that frustrate access and promote damage. If storage does not improve access for the purposes for which we keep collections, we fail in our duty of stewardship. In this session, we will explore the fundamentals to managing collections and designing storage. This session covers basic principles, practices, materials and techniques in collections storage. It addresses a variety of collections storage situations, along with common challenges and solutions, and includes discussion, activities, and resources.


  • Christopher Norris
  • Lisa Elkin
  • John Simmons
  • Robert Waller