I am please to announce LSU’s College of Human Sciences & Education Peabody Society Dean’s Circle agreed to fund the first phase of my Virtual Footlocker Project. More information about the funded Dean’s Circle Projects can be found at http://www.lsu.edu/chse/alumni/deans-circle-projects.php.
Below is an executive summary of project’s first phase:
For generations, soldiers documented their wartime experiences in personal diaries, photographs, and correspondence with loved ones. Often veterans kept these treasured personal collections long after their service, and handed them down to family members. Eventually, these personal military service records humanized the sacrifice of war through historians use as primary sources. With the digital revolution, the 21st century soldier no longer poses the same tangible personal archives creating a critical gap in the record. In its entirety, the Virtual Footlocker Project focuses on the development of an open-source, cross-system platform system for capturing and preserving the personal communication and documentary record of the modern soldier.
The first phase of this project will explore the personal archiving and record-keeping habits of the modern solider through addressing the following research questions: What types of communication and documentary methods are modern soldiers using? What, if any, methods are modern soldiers using to preserve their service-time archives and records and to what degree?
A survey of both open- and close-ended questions will be developed in consultation with a CHSE undergraduate veteran, reservist, or National Guard member and distributed to active duty, reservists, and veterans for a minimum total of 1,000 responses with 200 participants for each of the five service branches (split equally between officers and enlisted). Each participant may participate in drawing for one of 20 $50 Amazon.com gift cards (with 2 awarded per sub-group). The close-ended questions will be analyzed with descriptive and inferential statistics; and the open-ended questions will be analyzed with open-coding. The results will be submitted for presentation at national conference, and submitted as at least two journal articles. A graduate student in SLIS will assist during the data analysis and the creation of the conference presentations and journal articles.