Our friends at the Association of Academic Museums and Galleries have released their Call for Proposals for the AAMG 2020 Annual Conference to take place next June at the University of Kansas. This year’s theme is Risk & Bravery: Action and Response in the Academic Museum. They invite you to submit through their online portal.
We received news of a major fire at Odessa College in Ukraine yesterday. There are several victims, plus “the scientific library of the Institute of Marine Biology, its laboratory equipment, prototypes and scientific collections were completely destroyed”.
UMAC expresses its deepest sorrow for the loss of lives in this fire. We also extend our support and solidarity to the workers of the Institute of Marine Biology and, more generally, Odessa College.
Who works in university museums and collections worldwide? What are the expectations of professionals? How do they divide their time? What is their background training? Do they like their work or would they prefer to work elsewhere?
ICOM-UMAC wants to know the answers to these questions.
If you work — formally or informally, active or retired — in a higher education museum or collection anywhere in the world, we would be grateful if you could spare 10 minutes of your time to answer our Global Systematic Survey. The results will be published in a book in 2022.
The survey is part of the project P-MUS, involving ICOM-UMAC, ICOM-ICTOP, Universeum (Europe) and the AAMG (USA).
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.
The University of Sydney’s new Chau Chak Wing Museum will host the 20th annual UMAC conference from the 15th to 17th September, 2020.
The call for papers is now open!
The University of Sydney is Australia’s first university and home to the new, state-of-the-art Chau Chak Wing Museum. This museum will unite the university’s art, antiquities and natural history collections and is the result of a 10-year strategy. UMAC 2020 brings delegates to Sydney in spring, just weeks after the Chau Chak Wing Museum opens, to explore the conference theme of ‘New Destinations: Looking Forward, Looking Back’.
As the operating environment of higher education is changing, museums and collections can play a significant role in helping to shape an institution’s identity and narrative. They are an opportunity for diverse audiences to engage with history, academic thought and contemporary ideas while performing as a theatre space for innovative research and practice. UMAC 2020 examines the relationships between museums and collections and their institutional hosts, their relationship with the tripartite missions of teaching, research and engagement and their relevance to global issues in both higher education and broader society.
Call for Papers
Internationally, universities are using their museums and collections innovatively to create new forms of student, research and community engagement. The utility of collections for research training, object-based learning and cross-disciplinary programs is being increasingly explored and exploited in higher education. ‘New Destinations’ poses the question: ‘Are we there yet?’
The International Committee for UMAC invites proposals for its 20th Annual Conference. The theme of the conference is ‘New Destinations: Looking Forward, Looking Back. We are interested in receiving proposals that address the themes listed below.
Do museums and collections now represent the institutional DNA of a university?
Are university museums and collections now the central drivers of cultural production in higher education?
Do university leaders consider museums and collections to be core university business?
Is museum and collection work in higher education an emerging professional specialism?
Are university staff who work with material collections now recognised as an integral part of the global professional museum community?
How are ethnographic collections relevant to the generation of new knowledge, evolving institutional agendas and Indigenous community expectations?
The University of Sydney has substantial and highly significant Indigenous ethnographic collections. Much was acquired during a former time when Australia was on the margin of a European empire. As a special sub-theme of this conference, we consider possible new destinations for this category of university collection. Can the university museum lead the way in imagining and configuring new destinations for these collections?
Proposal submissions are due by Friday 28 February, 2020.
For more information and guidance on how to put forward a proposal visit the UMAC 2020 website.