News Archive

International Museum Day 2020

UMAC invites all university museums and collections to celebrate International Museum Day 2020, next May 18.

The theme is Museums for Equality: Diversity and Inclusion.

More info coming soon.

ICOFOM Consultation with National and International Committees on the new Museum Definition

For over forty years, the ICOM International Committee for Museology (ICOFOM) has been charged with fostering theoretical debates and circulation of knowledge in museum theory and practice. We have been actively engaged in addressing ICOM’s goal to establish basic concepts and definitions for the museum field. Most recently, we have been involved in the project of defining the museum in the 21st century that was initiated by ICOM in 2016 after the adoption of the 2015 Recommendation Concerning the Protection and Promotion of Museums and Collections, Their Diversity and Their Role in Society , and developed since 2017 by the Standing Committee on the Museum Definition, Prospects and Potentials (MDPP).

Understanding that the ICOM museum definition is the most structural and operational tool for the organization to express its central values and mission to the museum world, we, the International Committee for Museology Chair and Board members, would like to consult the ICOM community using a dialogical methodology to collect our various viewpoints on the current proposed definition.

ICOFOM therefore invites all National and International Committees to survey their members and express their views to us on the new proposed museum definition. Our goal as a committee is to collect a wide range of opinions representing the cultural diversity of ICOM members, including those who have not yet had the opportunity to participate fully in this debate. Gathering this greater range of diverse viewpoints, we will then present and publicize a general report, in keeping with our mission within the ICOM network.

ICOFOM, November 2019

 

All UMAC members are strongly encouraged to contribute to this debate by replying to the ICOFOM’s questionnaire below UNTIL 26 January 2020.

We will forward all replies to ICOFOM, and they will be taken into account in their report to the ICOM’s General Assembly, Paris, June 2020.

Questionnaire in ENGLISH

Questionnaire en FRANÇAIS

Questionario en ESPAÑOL

UMAC Board, November 2019

 

 

 

UMAC 2019 final program is out!

The program for the 19th UMAC Annual Conference in Kyoto was just published and can be accessed here.

If you are presenting a paper (oral or poster), or just participating, make sure you read our Useful Information section. It has everything you need — from guidelines to speakers, instructions for posters, how to find your way in Kyoto, maps of the conference locations, and much more.

Safe travels and see you in Kyoto!

The new museum definition is out!

In fact, two new museum definitions.

Following a long public debate, ICOM’s standing committee on Museum Definition, Prospects and Potentials (MDPP) has proposed two new museum definitions to the  Executive Board of ICOM, which will be voted  next September in Kyoto.

Read more here.

And here they are, the two definitions:

DEFINITION 1

Museums are democratising, inclusive and polyphonic spaces for critical dialogue about the pasts and the futures. Acknowledging and addressing the conflicts and challenges of the present, they hold artefacts and specimens in trust for society, safeguard diverse memories for future generations and guarantee equal rights and equal access to heritage for all people.

DEFINITION 2

Museums are not for profit. They are participatory and transparent, and work in active partnership with and for diverse communities to collect, preserve, research, interpret, exhibit, and enhance understandings of the world, aiming to contribute to human dignity and social justice, global equality and planetary well being.


A new museum definition was always likely to be controversial and this announcement is generating considerable debate.

What do you think? Please leave your comments below, we would love to hear from you.

UMAC is still debating how to vote in Kyoto, in any case at this point we are joining those who say that more internal debate is needed.

Read here a brief speech by the UMAC Chair on the importance of the museum definition for university museums, Milan, 8 July.

 

ICOM 2022 will be in Prague

Ray Swi-hymn from Sijhih-Taipei, Taiwan (20190202_OldTown@Praha_9271, CC BY-SA 2.0)

From ICOM:

Following the Advisory Council’s vote on the host city for the ICOM General Conference 2022 last June, ICOM and its National Committee in Egypt had started to prepare for the 26th ICOM General Conference in Alexandria. Both parties strived to meet the conditions and requirements for hosting the ICOM General Conference, an event which often attracts more than 3,000 participants and includes 150 sessions and workshops. The General Conference in Alexandria in 2022 was to be the first one in an African and Arab country. Alexandria, as home to the ancient and modern “biblioteca” would have been an attractive venue.

However, after ten months of preparation, ICOM received a letter from the Governor of Alexandria and e-mails from the National Committee ICOM Egypt, both stating that they are not able to organise the General Conference 2022 in Alexandria. The ICOM Executive Board had therefore no option – much to its regret – but to accept this decision and to cease the process.

As the city of Prague, Czech Republic, was the second candidate favoured by the Advisory Council, the ICOM Executive Board therefore took the decision to mandate its National Committee in the Czech Republic to organise the 26th ICOM General Conference in Prague. ICOM Czech Republic has now established an Organising Committee that has begun to work with partners on all levels from local to national and international. ICOM looks forward with pleasure and confidence to holding its General Conference in the Czech capital in 2022.

International Museum Day 2019

18 May is fast approaching and ICOM has prepared all the necessary information for planning and disseminating the activities of your university museum and collection.

Here are all the materials you need:

  • a IMD2019 kit with all the history, context, reasons and tips for organising activities, as well as communication tools.
  • the official IMD2919 website, with posters and banners to download in your language.
  • an interactive map, where you can tell the world, in real time, about your activities.

UMAC strongly encourages all university museums and collections to join this international celebration.

UMTWS 2019 edition was a success

Last week, university museum professionals from all over China gathered at the Qian Xuesen Library and Museum, Shanghai Jiao Tong University for another edition of the UMTWS.

This year, the course counted with the presence of Marta Lourenço (UMAC Chair), Jill Hartz (President Emeritus of the Association of Academic Museums and Galleries USA), Sébastien Soubiran (President of Universeum, the European Academic Heritage Network) and Andrew Simpson (UMAC Board). Moreover, from China, and apart from Laishun AN (Vice-President of ICOM), high officials from the cultural sector attended, namely Qiang GUAN and Xiaobo CHU, respectively responsible for the cultural heritage of China and Shanghai.

Kai Zhang and Hu Hao were our kind hosts at Shanghai Jiao Tong University.

Xiaobo CHU, Qiang GUAN, Marta Lourenço, Laishun AN and Kai ZHANG.

UMAC and Shanghai Jiao Tong University have agreed to continue their partnership, diversifying the training offer to suit different types of professionals and creating new initiatives to promote university museums in China.

UMAC and QLM-SJTU consolidate their partnership

Marta C. Lourenço and Kai Zhang, Qian Xuesen Library and Museum, Shanghai Jiao Tong University.

Today, UMAC and the Qian Xuesen Library and Museum of Shanghai Jiao Tong University, have publicly agreed to take their partnership to a more substantial level.

Here are some of the changes:

  • UMTWS (University Museum Training Weeks Shanghai) will be more directed to the needs and aspirations of university museum professionals.
  • There will be internships in overseas university museums for Chinese university museum professionals.
  • A high profile event, called the SJTU Directors’ Forum, will bring together university museum directors, higher education senior administrators and stakeholders from the museum and culture sectors, to discuss strategic issues related to universities, museums, heritage and culture.
  • The creation of a Research Centre for University Museums and Collections at SJTU.

The agreement was made after the opening session of the UMTWS 2019, and counted with the presence of An Laishun, Vice-President of ICOM; Guan Qiang, Vice-President of the National Cultural Heritage of China; and Hu Hao, Member of the SJTU University Council, among others.

Kyoto #UMAC2019 Program just released!

The preliminary program of the 19th UMAC Annual Conference in Kyoto has just been released.

AND WHAT A PROGRAM!

Here are some of the highlights:

  • 2 Keynote Speakers
  • 62 Oral Papers
  • 45 Poster Papers
  • 1 Special Session with ICTOP (ICOM International Committee for the Training of Personnel)
  • 1 Special Session about University Museums and Collections in Japan
  • 3 pre-conference Workshops
  • 1 post-conference Seminar (Tokyo)
  • Visits to university museums and collections in Kyoto

Papers from: Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, India, Iran, Israel, Italy, Japan, Lithuania, Mexico, New Zealand, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, UK, USA.

Download the  UMAC 2019 DETAILED PROGRAM

More info about UMAC 2019.

Registrations for ICOM 2019 — do not forget to register before April 30!