Guidelines for collecting and donating material to SKS archive

SKS archives accept photographs and sound and video recordings in a variety of formats.

The literature and cultural history collections consist of private archives donated by writers, cultural figures, researchers, self-taught writers, and literary societies. The traditional and contemporary culture collections consist of texts, letters, photos and other source materials from individual collectors of folklore and SKS’s own fieldwork on folklore, traditions, memories and contemporary culture. 

Anyone can donate material to SKS, but it is strongly recommended to contact the Archives before your donation.


Manuscripts and questionnaire replies

If you are not using the electronic platform, write your questionnaire replies on white A4-sheets (one side only). Leave a small margin to all sides. Please do not use stickers, tape or staples.

Write your background information (name, address, telephone number, email, profession, date and place of birth) on another sheet - or in a separate email. Do not forget to add a signed permission that the material can be archived and used.

Please use doc-, rtf-, or txt-files if you send texts as attachments. Do not use Nordic alphabet when while naming the files.

Remember to take a copy for yourself, because text contributions will not be returned.


Private archives and Archives of literary societies

Archives of societies and private persons should be maintained as one unit. Separating materials can cause difficulties for understanding contexts and seeing the entirety of the material, which will make archivists’ work harder.

Material does not need to be in formal order when donated, but it can be grouped by types (such as letters, manuscripts, speeches, other writings etc.) The SKS Archives will organise and catalogue the archives.

Terms of use are possible to negotiate during the donation process.



Both Collections have photograph collections of their own. SKS archives accepts photographs as donations, but you can also lend them us for copying. Remember to tell us if photographs or negatives have to be returned. In the case of large amounts of photographs, it is recommended to negotiate about copying with the archive in advance. The archives prefers original photographs both for archiving and creating copies. It is not always possible to accept all offered photographs, sometimes context, content and condition are evaluated. 

When donating photographs write down information about every unit.  This is advised to do on a separate paper sheet. The most important additional information is: time and place, subject, individuals and the photographer. Describe the captured event at least to some extent. If a donation is made with digital copies, do the same in digital form using the file names as a reference list.

If possible do not attach tangible photographs at all. An envelope or a folded white paper sheet are great covers. If they already are attached in an album, please give us the albums or their pages as whole. If you do not want some photographs or parts of them copied, tell us, do not cut or otherwise damage the originals. Stickers, paper clips or staples are also harmful for photographs.

With digital material, do not send printed versions, send the files. Also send them in as original form as possible. You can send the material with a flash drive or other storage devices or attach the material to an email. If photographs are part of a questionnaire reply you can also send them via the web form used in collecting.

Contact before donating your material.  



Both Collections have recording collections of their own.

When making recordings, use an audio recorder which creates wav-, mp3- or wma-files. Attach background information (time and place, who interviewed who) and a description of the content.

Remember to start your recording with the background information and the interviewees’ permission to archive and use the material with their name.