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E-newsletter February 2014
Assessment mission in Egypt © ICOM

Assessment mission in Egypt

An emergency mission led by ICOM, UNESCO and the Blue Shield took place in Cairo from 30 January to 2 February, 2014, following a car bomb blast that caused significant damage to the building that houses both the Islamic Museum and Egypt's National Library and Archives. The mission team worked together with the directors, curators and conservators of both institutions to assess damage to the building and to the collections exhibited.
Although the structure survived, the building was severely damaged and parts of its electricity installations, fire and water networks, and air condition systems were destroyed. The institutions’ collections were also seriously affected, with damaged pieces including 61 ceramics, 54 glass objects, 20 metal works, 18 wood works, seven rare manuscripts and three papyri. The assessment mission team is working to raise funds to repair the damage, and UNESCO has already set aside 100,000 USD to help restore the collections of both institutions. Read More

Celebrating 200 years of museum work in India

An International Conference and Intensive Seminar on Strategic Transformations: Museums in the 21st Century was held from 9-14 February, 2014 in New Delhi and Kolkata, India. The event coincided with the 200th anniversary celebration of Kolkata’s Indian Museum, the oldest museum in India. Organised by the Indian government and its Department of Culture together with ICOM India, the conference reflected on the history of museum work in India and concentrated on recent museum developments and ways to prepare museums for the challenges of the 21st century.

ICOM President Prof. Dr Hans-Martin Hinz opened the conference with a speech on Global Trends in Museums at the National Museum in New Delhi and gave a keynote address on Museums and Transformations in Post-Reunification Germany at Science City in Kolkata. Hinz lauded the rapid development of museums in the region and encouraged fellow colleagues to reflect on the future of museums and the roles they will play over the next 10-20 years. He urged them to ensure that museums be a “cultural driving force for the sustainable development of the world.”

During this trip, Prof. Dr Hinz discussed the future development of ICOM’s National Committee in India with members of the committee at their meeting in Kolkata, and with the Secretary of the Indian Ministry of Culture in New Delhi. Read More


Training seminar in Mali 

Following the events that shook Mali in 2012 and their devastating consequences for the country’s cultural heritage, ICOM, the Smithsonian Institution and the National Museum of Mali held a regional training seminar for West African museum professionals on The Role of Museums in the Context of a Crisis at the National Museum of Mali, Bamako, from 27 to 31 January 2014. The five-day seminar was attended by around 30 museum professionals from Benin, Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Guinea, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Senegal, and Togo.
ICOM developed this training seminar, which aimed to improve the emergency preparedness of museums in this West African sub-region, thanks to the generous support of the Smithsonian Institution and the contribution of UNESCO. It was organised in collaboration with the Malian Ministry of Culture and with the participation of the French Ministry of Culture and Communication.
Read More


The musée des Confluences project

 The musée des Confluences is set to open its doors in winter 2014 in Lyon, France. The museum will provide the city of Lyon and the Rhône department with a unique space that will bring together collections on science, art and society. One of the museum’s missions is to teach visitors about the development and evolution of human societies throughout the ages and around the world. Having inherited the former collections of the Natural History Museum of Lyon, which closed in 2007, the musée des Confluences will reopen these collections to the public, incorporating them into its four permanent exhibitions: Origins, stories of the world; Species, the web of life; Societies, the theatre of men; and Eternities, visions of the afterlife.
Designed by the Austrian firm Coop Himmelb(l)au, the state-of-the-art building that will house the museum is located at the confluence of the Rhône and the Saône rivers in Lyon. Covering an area of 22,000m², it includes permanent and temporary exhibition spaces, workshops, digital and experimental rooms, a brasserie, a restaurant with a terrace, and a museum store.
For more information

© Musée des Confluences - Département du Rhône

Follow @IcomOfficiel on Twitter!

 ICOM is now active on Twitter with the objective of disseminating information about ICOM’s activities and programmes to a large audience. We look forward to tweeting updates on the activities of ICOM’s governance and committees, progress made on ICOM programmes and news coverage of interest to the international heritage community. Visit to access our page and follow @IcomOfficiel!

Many of ICOM’s National and International Committees and Affiliated Organisations also have Twitter pages. You can find them on the list of pages ICOM is following:

© Musée des Confluences - Département du Rhône

ICOM News 2014: call for contributions

ICOM is pleased to launch a call for contributions for the next two issues of ICOM News. The magazine is available through the ICOM website and distributed to ICOM’s 30,000 members and subscribers around the world. It is an effective platform for sharing case studies, new ideas and practical advice with a large audience of museum professionals. The publication is divided into In Focus, Best Practices and Special Report sections, each focusing on a specific theme pertinent to contemporary museum work.
In the July 2014 issue the Special Report theme will be Museum financing, the Best Practices section will focus on Travelling exhibitions and the In Focus theme will be Museum collections make connections. The December 2014 issue will explore The visitor experience in its Special Report, Visitor research methods in Best Practices and Museums for a sustainable society in its In Focus section.

Please submit proposals related to these topics to

Publications: E-magazine: ICOM Bosnia and Herzegovina

ICOM Bosnia and Herzegovina. Sarajevo: National Committee ICOM Bosnia and Herzegovina, 2013. 54 p., ill.

The first issue of the ICOM Bosnia and Herzegovina e-magazine, published online in December 2013, introduces ICOM Bosnia and Herzegovina and reviews its activities in 2013.

The publication includes the National Committee’s participation in International Museum Day and the ICOM General Conference held in Rio de Janeiro as well as a report on Rio’s new museums. Among other content, the publication includes an interview with Suay Aksoy in her position as Chair of CAMOC (International Committee for the Collections and Activities of Museums of Cities) as well as case studies, events and museum news from Bosnia and Herzegovina. The e-magazine is available at:

Publications: Reinventing Museums

Iñaki Arrieta Urtizberea. Bilbao: Servicio Editorial de la Universidad del País Vasco, 2013. 223 p. ISBN 978-84-9860-884-7 (in Spanish)

This publication compiles several articles in English, French and Spanish on the current situation of museums and how important it is that they evolve to meet the new cultural demands of contemporary society. The financial crisis has made this transition all the more challenging because many museums have difficulty investing in new technology and programmes that will help them connect with the public.

Reinventing Museums begins with a brief retrospective of the history of museums and the subsequent articles focus on ways to enhance collections as well as museum management techniques to attract more visitors. Many articles point out the need for educational programmes for museum professionals and applaud collaboration within the world museum community.

Publications: Tried and Tested Partnerships Report

The Network of European Museum Organisations (NEMO) and the Netherlands Museums Association. Amsterdam: NEMO and the Netherlands Museums Association, 2014. 50 p.

This report, published on 24 January, 2014 by the Network of European Museum Organisations (NEMO) and the Netherlands Museums Association, explains how Dutch museums can become more innovative through cooperation with other museums and organisations. The report affirms that such collaboration is especially necessary in the context of today’s difficult financial climate. The publication also includes measures that could help museums achieve greater visibility for their collections, increase visitor numbers and cut costs. While the report focuses on the Netherlands, the authors point out that the same principles could apply to museums throughout Europe. PDF available at:

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