The Open Society Archives (OSA) at Central European University is an archival laboratory. While actively collecting, preserving, and making openly accessible documents related to recent history and human rights, we continue to experiment with new ways to contextualize primary sources, developing innovative tools to explore, represent, or bridge traditional archival collections in a digital environment. The collection is an essential source on the post-war political, social, and economic history of the European region. We also hold the personal papers of a range of political, cultural, and counter-culture figures from the Cold War Era to the present and several series of Soviet, Polish and Hungarian underground literature, which when taken together constitute one the world’s largest samizdat collections.
The fonds are created by non-governmental and supra-governmental organizations as well as individuals active in post-war Central and Eastern Europe documenting human rights violations and war crimes. Most important among these fonds are the UN Expert Commission on Investigating War Crimes in the Former Yugoslavia, the International Helsinki Federation for Human Rights (IHF), Index on Censorship as well as the Physicians for Human Rights (PHR).