The UMAC Board, in close consultation with the UMAC 2020 Local Organising Committee, has been closely monitoring the COVID-19 situation across the world and within Australia and has decided to cancel the UMAC 2020 conference that was to be held at the Chau Chak Wing Museum, University of Sydney, in September.
The UMAC Board has reluctantly reached this decision in view of current restrictions and uncertainties about when social and economic life and international travel will return to normal in Australia and worldwide.
The UMAC Board is currently considering the University of Sydney hosting the UMAC conference in 2023. In the meantime, the UMAC 2020 registration process has been suspended and preparatory activities for 2020 have now ceased.
The conference would initiate the commemorations of the 20th anniversary of UMAC and was to include a review of the past 20 years of university museums and collections as well as a look into the futures of the sector.
We hope to host a ‘marker’ event later in 2020, possibly online, to hold our 20th Annual General Meeting, acknowledge the 20th anniversary of UMAC and attribute the UMAC Award 2020.
We would like to thank all who have been involved in planning the conference and especially thank members of the UMAC community for their support with the record number of outstanding submissions, totaling 138 from 30 countries and territories. While the conference cannot proceed, we hope to capture some of this material in digital activities this year and in a special edition of extended abstracts for the University Museums and Collections Journal. There will be more communication on this from the Journal Editor shortly.
We look forward to seeing you all in Dresden in 2021.
David Ellis, Chair UMAC 2020 Local Organising Committee
Marta C. Lourenço, Chair, ICOM-UMAC