Last updated:

December 19, 2018

What do I need to know?

Searching by responsible agency close agency Definition Any department, agency or office of the Government of Victoria will help you to discover records held by Public Record Office Victoria (PROV) relating to an agency’s current or past business and operations, including records created by an agency’s predecessors.

You will need to know the name of the agency responsible for the records you are looking for. Enter the name in the search box below.


What is a responsible agency?

An agency is considered the “responsible agency” by PROV if it either:

  • Transferred the records to PROV, including records created by its predecessors e.g. City of Yarra is responsible for records held by PROV that were created by the council since its establishment in 1994 as well as records transferred to PROV that were created by its predecessors (former cities Fitzroy, Collingwood and Richmond).
  • Is the current government agency close government agency Definition Any department, agency or office of the Government of Victoria. which conducts the function close function Definition Functions describe the role and administrative activities of government e.g. inquests. A list of functions is similar to a subject index or thesaurus. Function information tells you which agencies have created records relating to that Function. For example, there have been two agencies responsible for the same function of registering inquests (Function 43 (VF 43) Inquests registration) the Chief Secretary's Department until 1869 and the Registrar-General's Department from 1869 to 1873. documented in the records e.g. the current Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) is responsible for records created by its many predecessors – including Commissions, community service agencies, mental health and child welfare institutions.

Occasionally two agencies may be considered to be responsible for a records series concurrently.


How do I search?

Enter the name of the responsible agency whose records you wish to find. Searching by responsible agency should retrieve in one search, the records created by an agency’s predecessors.

    Next Steps

    Order the records for viewing via our online catalogue.

    Government agencies please note:

    • if you wish to order close order Definition Physical records can be ordered for viewing in PROV’s reading rooms.  When a user orders a record, it is reserved solely for their use. closed records and/or view the records in your agency, you will first need to register close register Definition A record in which transactions or activities are logged, usually in chronological or sequential order. as a government user.

    See Ordering and collecting for government users for further information.


    What are in these records?

    Agencies may be responsible for various types of records in PROV custody.


    Notes when searching by responsible agency

    • The agency title must be known to PROV for it to be linked to records series.
    • Although PROV regularly updates responsible agency information for commonly retrieved series (usually after extensive machinery of government close machinery of government Definition The allocation or reallocation of government functions between government agencies. changes), not all 18,000+ records series are updated regularly. Records series on low retrieval are updated on request.
    • If you do not find the records you are expecting, consider searching by an agency’s previous title or whether a different agency may have previously been responsible for those records.
    • Users may wish to conduct a catalogue search by 'creating agency' in addition to using the search on this page to ensure that they receive the most complete results possible.