Keeping civic memories of Fundación Felipe González safe

The Felipe González Foundation has two main missions, it aims to be a think tank of ideas around global progress, from social democracy and equality. On the other hand, it is committed to “civic memory”, making the archive of the former president available to the public.


Preserving memory for the benefit of future generations is a core value and aim for the Fundación. Digitization is the start of this process and how the documents are treated and catalogued is a key consideration as it directly impacts on accessibility and preservation.


The challenge of current media obsolescence is also a concern for the Fundación and for archivists around the world. To solve this problem, many organisations build their archive around data migration strategies, where data is moved every few years to new media or software formats. This can be a risky and expensive process. The Fundación was intrigued by Piql’s unique technology, solving the problem of technological obsolescence, with guaranteed future accessibility. With leading digitisation services offering optical character recognition and enriched metadata extraction, along with expert support in archival management offers Piql a viable future focussed solution.

Reinforcing the need to undertake sustainable strategies for the long-term digital preservation of data and documents is a fundamental issue that must be on the public agenda. Valuing our past should not only consist of storing and digitizing. We must broaden the debate so as not to underestimate the most important dimension: memory must be conceived as a service to citizens.


To explore Piql’s technology further, the Fundación has undertaken a symbolic project to store and safely preserve Spanish history, and it also helps the Fundación to understand the potential benefits of Piql technology.

We preserved Three Collections from the Foundation Archive:
The steps to democracy (Pre-constitutional secret meetings) / including the transcript of the talks held in October 1976 and in March 1977 between a secret services command (Central Documentation Service), Felipe González and Alfonso Guerra, young leaders of the Spanish Socialist Workers Party still illegal. Socialism: The Congresses / Photographs taken by Pablo Juliá portray the Congress of the Spanish Socialist Workers Party. Life in Moncloa: The Government / The offices and the hearings. The notebooks of the President are testimony of daily life in the Moncloa Palace. In this sample we find handwritten annotations; preparatory notes for parliamentary debates; meetings notes; drafts of letters or reflections on current political events. The photographs taken by Miguel Povedano, official photographer of Moncloa, as the testimony of the audiences and meetings of the President, including the signing ceremony for the accession to the European Economic Community in 1985, the Peace Conference for the Middle East held in 1991, and the various Ibero-American Summits that took place from that same year.


In addition, the Fundación wanted to dive into its archive about Norway and some photographs of Gro Harlem, Kåre Willoch and Harald V. The Fundación also found mission of the Arctic World Archive very interesting, as a repository of world memory, holding critically important treasures from well-known organisations.