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Case Studies

In preparation for the launch of the National Strategy we have been collecting case studies from Scottish businesses to demonstrate how their archive collections are used as business assets.

Case studies from a variety of businesses, archive repositories and heritage organisations are available below to demonstrate how business archive collections are used by businesses, researchers and archive organisations to add value, be a business asset and enhance our understanding of Scotland's rich industrial and economic past. 

Other case studies

A collection of case studies were created to support the English and Welsh strategy in 2009 and they can be found in the Corporate Memory guide.  This guide has eight case studies which give examples of how different companies have been able to make use of their archive collections for a variety of purposes. These vary from commemoration and awareness raising to marketing and product development.

There are more case studies on the Managing Business Archives site.  These include examples from the BBC, Chorus plc, John Lewis Partnership and BT plc. 

In November 2010, the New York Times ran a series of articles about luxury brands and how they use their archives.  The overview is here and discusses how business archives and archivists can reinforce key marketing messages, perpetuate brand myths and create PR narratives with examples from Chanel, Tiffany, Gucci and Pringle.  There are also individual detailed case studies from:

  • Aquascutum - whose Archivist states that “society has a new perception of the relevance of history nowadays.  My part is bringing that to life within Aquascutum.”
  • Christian Dior - their collection includes original haute couture samples as well as personal items belonging to Mr Dior such as travel albums and his handwritten collection of cooking recipes.
  • Liberty - whose prime users are their fabric design studio and the company are keen to use the archive for brand heritage but not be enslaved by it.
  • Patek Philippe - whose archivist believes that she has "more resources and that my work has a more active role in keeping the heritage alive.”
  • Salvatore Ferragamo - where the eldest of the Ferragamo children. Fiamma recognised the importance of the archives and "considered culture to be an essential element for the elaboration and understanding of company strategy... and besides being a system of records, the archive is also a place for memory in the dynamic sense.”