Interacting with the Nutrition Society archives: look, read, touch, think, create, write, talk and share

Summer Conference 2018 archive exhibition - Uni of Leeds

Continuous care of The Nutrition Society’s records and corporate memory has produced an archive of information assets that evidence collaborations between nutritional scientists since 1941. Primary source material of biographical and historical importance captures the critical thinking behind political and social drivers that developed nutritional science. The Nutrition Society will provide continuous and long-term management and preservation of its records and those pertaining to the Secretariat services it hosts, including the International Union of Nutritional Sciences. The authenticity, reliability, integrity and usability of these records is captured in ways that ensures future researchers will have access to information and be able to examine, analyse and circulate new ideas in the future.

The Society’s archive is registered with the National Archives and has a unique Archon code to identify its collections. On-going design of the archives catalogue is supported by a framework of policies, plans and procedures, designed to comply with the democratic principles of documenting accountability and transparency. Compliance will be delivered that adopts and enforces appropriate national archival policies and laws, to locate, retrieve, select, and interpret usable records. Schedules designed to ensure compliance with General Data Protection Regulations, will ensure access is restricted where appropriate, to protect privacy rights.

The Nutrition Society’s commitment to long-term preservation of its physical and digital assets is being delivered with appropriate conservation and preservation management. The Society will exhibit selected items from its collections after mitigating any associated risks, maintaining a balance between preservation and access of this significant resource.

Showcasing its 75-year history with an archive exhibition during the Society’s reception at the Royal Society in December 2016 identified further exhibition potential.

Understanding that an exhibition has the power to animate a collection and inspire new audiences, the Society decided to host its first theme specific exhibition at the 2018 Summer Conference at University of Leeds. The conference and archive exhibition theme ‘Getting energy balance right’ provided a narrative to trace ideologies concerning obesity and capture the scope of the Society’s evolving European and International collaboration on this topic.  The International Union of Nutrition Societies (IUNS) and Federation of European Nutrition Societies (FENS) characterise this ideal through their meetings, emphasising that energy balance is a recurring topic which remains as important today as it was in 1919.

This exhibition showcased 69 items from the archives to signify the history of the conference theme and the effects and affects of continuous scientific collaboration.  Engaging with ideas at the intersection between archives and nutritional science highlighted how energy balance has been explored for almost one hundred years. Methods of discussion are more sophisticated and professional as understanding of nutrition and energy balance has become more nuanced: the emphasis changing from malnutrition to obesity.

The expertise of the conference visitors enhanced the exhibition with discussions reflecting different points of view: they could look, read, touch, think, create, write, talk and share. At the Archives Interactive table delegates responded to statements selected from documents in the Society’s archives, concerning energy balance, weighing their opinion against the statement by selecting a blue counter to agree with the statement, a yellow counter to disagree with the statement or a white counter to show uncertainty. In this participatory experience, people engaged with nutritional voices from the past and became enlightened how language has changed over time to articulate scientific ideas. The images below indicate the statement from the document and illustrate the percentage of assenting and dissenting opinions generated in the interaction.

With an archive strategy for outreach and engagement, the Nutrition Society welcomes opportunities to host further archive exhibitions and activities in collaboration with archives of other learned and scientific societies.

Sheila Mercieca
The Nutrition Society Archives, Library and Records Manager

Statement from The Early Years, by Dilys Wells, Editor of Nutrition and Food Science, article featured in Towards a Healthier Britain Conference, Report Summary, April 21 1977.  46% agreed, 27% disagreed and 27% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from The Early Years, by Dilys Wells, Editor of Nutrition and Food Science, article featured in Towards a Healthier Britain Conference, Report Summary, April 21 1977. 46% agreed, 27% disagreed and 27% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Obesity in Childhood, article by June K. Lloyd M.D., F.R.C.P featured in Nutrition and Food Science in Association with the British Nutrition Foundation, April 1971, No.23.  36% agreed, 29% disagreed and 36% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Obesity in Childhood, article by June K. Lloyd M.D., F.R.C.P featured in Nutrition and Food Science in Association with the British Nutrition Foundation, April 1971, No.23. 36% agreed, 29% disagreed and 36% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from The Doctors Tell You What to Eat in Wartime, British Medical Association, 1940.  100% agreed with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from The Doctors Tell You What to Eat in Wartime, British Medical Association, 1940. 100% agreed with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Ban on the Banana, minuted in the Fourth Informal Conference of Nutrition Workers, December 14 1940.  90% disagreed and 11% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Ban on the Banana, minuted in the Fourth Informal Conference of Nutrition Workers, December 14 1940. 90% disagreed and 11% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from The 52nd Stephen Paget Memorial Lecture, delivered by Professor Roy Calne F.R.S., University of Cambridge, The Research Defence Society, November 14 1983.  38% agreed, 43% disagreed and 19% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from The 52nd Stephen Paget Memorial Lecture, delivered by Professor Roy Calne F.R.S., University of Cambridge, The Research Defence Society, November 14 1983. 38% agreed, 43% disagreed and 19% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Declaration, Final Act of the United Nations Conference on Food and Agriculture, May 18 - June 3 1943.  17% agreed and 83% disagreed with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Declaration, Final Act of the United Nations Conference on Food and Agriculture, May 18 - June 3 1943. 17% agreed and 83% disagreed with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Workshop 7: Guidelines for the Elderly, Salt, Dr Paul Dodson, XIII International Congress on Nutrition, Brighton, August 18 - 23 1985.  9% agreed, 64% disagreed and 27% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Workshop 7: Guidelines for the Elderly, Salt, Dr Paul Dodson, XIII International Congress on Nutrition, Brighton, August 18 - 23 1985. 9% agreed, 64% disagreed and 27% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from The School Child's Taste in Vegetables, enquiry by F. Le Gros Clark B.A, Foreword by Dr. J. C. Drummond D.Sc, F.I.C., The Hertfordshire County Council, 1940.  10% agreed, 60% disagreed and 30% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from The School Child's Taste in Vegetables, enquiry by F. Le Gros Clark B.A, Foreword by Dr. J. C. Drummond D.Sc, F.I.C., The Hertfordshire County Council, 1940. 10% agreed, 60% disagreed and 30% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Report on the Food Requirements of Man, Food (War) Committee, The Royal Society, 1919.  91% agreed and 9% disagreed with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Report on the Food Requirements of Man, Food (War) Committee, The Royal Society, 1919. 91% agreed and 9% disagreed with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Report on the Food Requirements of Man, Food (War) Committee, The Royal Society, 1919.  Summer Conference archive exhibition result: 30% agreed, 36% disagreed and 33% unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Report on the Food Requirements of Man, Food (War) Committee, The Royal Society, 1919. Summer Conference archive exhibition result: 30% agreed, 36% disagreed and 33% unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from The Doctors Tell You What to Eat in Wartime, British Medical Association, 1940.  17% agreed, 58% disagreed and 25% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from The Doctors Tell You What to Eat in Wartime, British Medical Association, 1940. 17% agreed, 58% disagreed and 25% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Studies of the Diet of Students at Edinburgh University, by A. H. Kitchen, R. Passmore, M. Pyke, and G. M. Warnock, reprinted from British Journal of Social Medicine, Vol 3 No.1 1949, British Medical Association.  29% agreed, 20% disagreed and 51% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Studies of the Diet of Students at Edinburgh University, by A. H. Kitchen, R. Passmore, M. Pyke, and G. M. Warnock, reprinted from British Journal of Social Medicine, Vol 3 No.1 1949, British Medical Association. 29% agreed, 20% disagreed and 51% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Secular Trends in Growth, by T. J. Cole, Proceedings of the Nutrition Society (2000), 59, 317-324.  22% agreed and 78% disagreed with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Secular Trends in Growth, by T. J. Cole, Proceedings of the Nutrition Society (2000), 59, 317-324. 22% agreed and 78% disagreed with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Nutrition in relation to Stature, by Helen s. Mitchell Ph.d, Journal of the American Dietetics Association, Vol 40 No.6 June 1962.  71% agreed and 29% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Nutrition in relation to Stature, by Helen s. Mitchell Ph.d, Journal of the American Dietetics Association, Vol 40 No.6 June 1962. 71% agreed and 29% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Prenatal and Neo-natal nutrition of the Infant, April 1941.  20% agreed, 40% disagreed and 40% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Prenatal and Neo-natal nutrition of the Infant, April 1941. 20% agreed, 40% disagreed and 40% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from School Meals Specimen Dietary for School Dinners, Notes on the Preparation and Cooking of Vegetables, Board of Education Circular 1584, February 24 1942.  80% disagreed and 20% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from School Meals Specimen Dietary for School Dinners, Notes on the Preparation and Cooking of Vegetables, Board of Education Circular 1584, February 24 1942. 80% disagreed and 20% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Feeding the People in Wartime, by Sir John Orr, and David Lubbock Macmillan & Co., 1940.  65% agreed and 35% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Feeding the People in Wartime, by Sir John Orr, and David Lubbock Macmillan & Co., 1940. 65% agreed and 35% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Proceedings of The Ninth Annual Nutrition Conference, , organised by the Flour Advisory Bureau, with, Home Economics and Domestic Subjects Review, October 9 1971.  30% agreed, 30% disagreed and 40% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Proceedings of The Ninth Annual Nutrition Conference, , organised by the Flour Advisory Bureau, with, Home Economics and Domestic Subjects Review, October 9 1971. 30% agreed, 30% disagreed and 40% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Report on the Food Requirements of Man, Food (War) Committee, The Royal Society, 1919.  73% agreed, 4% disagreed and 23% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Report on the Food Requirements of Man, Food (War) Committee, The Royal Society, 1919. 73% agreed, 4% disagreed and 23% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Report on the Food Requirements of Man, Food (War) Committee, The Royal Society, 1919.  7% agreed, 66% disagreed and 28% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Report on the Food Requirements of Man, Food (War) Committee, The Royal Society, 1919. 7% agreed, 66% disagreed and 28% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Education and Research, Final Act of the United Nations Conference on Food and Agriculture, May 18 - June 3 1943.  68% agreed, 12% disagreed and 20% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Education and Research, Final Act of the United Nations Conference on Food and Agriculture, May 18 - June 3 1943. 68% agreed, 12% disagreed and 20% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Declaration, Final Act of the United Nations Conference on Food and Agriculture, May 18 - June 3 1943.  62% agreed, 10% disagreed and 28% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Declaration, Final Act of the United Nations Conference on Food and Agriculture, May 18 - June 3 1943. 62% agreed, 10% disagreed and 28% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from The Communal Restaurant, a Study of the Place of Civic Restaurants in the life of the Community, London Council of Social Service, 1943.  14% agreed, 62% disagreed and 24% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from The Communal Restaurant, a Study of the Place of Civic Restaurants in the life of the Community, London Council of Social Service, 1943. 14% agreed, 62% disagreed and 24% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Skin Deep Skin Deep, article by Anne Duerden B.Sc. featured in Nutrition and Food Science in Association with the British Nutrition Foundation, April 1971, No.23.  100% agreed with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Skin Deep Skin Deep, article by Anne Duerden B.Sc. featured in Nutrition and Food Science in Association with the British Nutrition Foundation, April 1971, No.23. 100% agreed with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from The Doctors Tell You What to Eat in Wartime, British Medical Association, 1940.  39% agreed, 13% disagreed and 48% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from The Doctors Tell You What to Eat in Wartime, British Medical Association, 1940. 39% agreed, 13% disagreed and 48% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Obesity in Childhood, article by June K. Lloyd M.D., F.R.C.P featured in Nutrition and Food Science in Association with the British Nutrition Foundation, April 1971, No.23.  8% agreed, 60% disagreed and 32% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Obesity in Childhood, article by June K. Lloyd M.D., F.R.C.P featured in Nutrition and Food Science in Association with the British Nutrition Foundation, April 1971, No.23. 8% agreed, 60% disagreed and 32% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Nutrition in the Welfare State, by Alice Mary Copping D.Sc. Reader in Nutrition Queen Elizabeth College London, 1967.  70% agreed, 22% disagreed and 9% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Nutrition in the Welfare State, by Alice Mary Copping D.Sc. Reader in Nutrition Queen Elizabeth College London, 1967. 70% agreed, 22% disagreed and 9% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Report on the Food Requirements of Man, Food (War) Committee, The Royal Society, 1919.  96% disagreed and 4% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

Statement from Report on the Food Requirements of Man, Food (War) Committee, The Royal Society, 1919. 96% disagreed and 4% were unsure with the statement at the Archives Interactive table.

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