This study used the theoretical framework of stakeholder theory to explore users’ perceptions of archives and how this perception impacts their use of the archives. Using an intercept survey of archives’ users actively conducting research in the reading rooms of five institutions, this study gathered data relating to how users perceive archives and libraries, their thoughts on the positioning of archives, and what they believe successful archival research looks like. Findings indicate that users value the archives and the materials they hold; however, only some users identify as archives users, and many do not acknowledge the archives beyond being a network of collections. These findings suggest users’ perceptions may be limiting their use of the resource and their potential for information-seeking success, indicating that archives have a lot of opportunity to enhance their presence and impact with users.

You do not currently have access to this content.