A framework for person-centred recordkeeping drawn through the lens of out-of-home childcare contexts

Elizabeth Lomas, Elizabeth Shepherd, Victoria Hoyle, Anna Sexton, Andrew Flinn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This article examines the concept and needs for co-created and person-centred recordkeeping in out-of-home childcare contexts drawing out a recordkeeping framework. The article uses the research of the UK MIRRA project as its critical evidence base. MIRRA (Memory-Identity-Rights in Records-Access) is a participatory research project hosted at the Department of Information Studies at UCL since 2017 which places care leavers as co-researchers at the heart of the work. The study gathered evidence from care-experienced people, social workers, archivists, records managers and researchers. The case context of care-experienced people provides a powerful focus for shifting viewpoints of records creation and ownership. Care-experienced people across the globe are situated within organizational systems which act as surrogate parents, but where the child or young person is often powerless to co-create and store their own memories, which would enable positive identities to be forged and revisited through time. Positive and holistic life story narratives are rarely found. In addition, children’s care records are often only accessible to care-experienced people through legislative processes and without critical support. This research reframes the recordkeeping model placing the care-experienced person at the heart of the process in order to ensure the co-creation of records and maintenance of identity through time. The research acknowledges the complex and sometimes conflicting needs of diverse actors in children’s recordkeeping including social workers, archivists, records managers and researchers. It rethinks the actors’ relationship and responsibilities around the records and systems drawing out a framework which makes explicit the value of active person-centred recordkeeping.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2 Dec 2022

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