a home for expat life stories
To collect and preserve the life stories of expatriates worldwide for future research.
- To curate and preserve unique source material documenting the experiences of expatriates of all nationalities and backgrounds;
- To establish a centre of excellence for expatriation research;
- To give the life stories of expatriates their rightful place in global migration history.
The EAC exists to facilitate quality research that promotes and enhances a better understanding of expatriate life. We are located in The Netherlands but have a global outreach. We count more than 130 family archives from 14 nationalities in 120 countries in our holdings, and we hope to add many more in the coming years.
Research topics and conclusions are not opinions held by the EAC but are the sole ownership of the researcher.
Who We Are
The Expatriate Archive Centre is run by an enthusiastic team of staff and volunteers. Our staff are:
Board of Trustees
- Han Kooij (Chair)
- Piet van Erk (Treasurer)
- Tasoula Georgiou Hadjitofi (Nominations Committee)
- Meghann Ormond (Academic)
- Tom Moody-Stuart
- Kees de Groot
- Alexandra Mesteru (Shell Representative)
- Henk van Hout (Shell Representative)
Elizabeth Emmerson, Chief Archivist for the Mechanism for International Criminal Tribunals in The Hague, advises the EAC in a personal capacity.
The Expatriate Archive Centre is fortunate to be supported by a group of dedicated volunteers of many different nationalities. Are you interested in joining them? Find out more about volunteering with us.
We are always interested in collaborating with other organisations and companies.
If you have a project idea, please contact us.
The Expatriate Archive Centre is a proud member of the following organisations:
- Netwerk Digitaal Erfgoed (Digital Heritage Network).
- European Ego-Documents Archives and Collections Network.
- European Oil & Gas Archives Network.
- Families In Global Transition (FIGT). We are a co-founder of the FIGT affiliate in the Netherlands.
- International Council on Archives.
- Koninklijke Vereniging van Archivarissen in Nederland (Royal Association of Archivists in the Netherlands).
- Branchevereniging Archiefinstellingen Nederland (Sector Association of Archives Institutions in the Netherlands).
- L’Association pour l’autobiographie et le patrimoine autobiographique (APA).
The idea for an archive dedicated to preserving the life stories of expatriates grew from two books published in the 1990s. A group of wives of employees of Royal Dutch Shell collected material for these two anthologies from Shell families all over the world. The original material was stored but not forgotten: in 2003 the Outpost Family Archive was opened in The Hague to continue the work that had been started by the “Shell Ladies Project.” The archive became independent from Shell in 2008 and renamed the Expatriate Archive Centre.
Today the archive continues with the mission to archive the life stories of expats and their families from all backgrounds and from anywhere in the world. Our current holdings contain more than 130 family archives, 14 different nationalities, and 18 languages from 120 countries.