The International Council of Museums (ICOM) is the only international organisation representing museums and museum professionals.
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E-newsletter October 2016
International Science Center and Science Museum day

10 November, 2016: International Science Center and Science Museum day

The ISCSMD is a collaborative effort between the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), the International Council of Museums (ICOM), the Association of Science and Technology Museums (ASTC) and five main centers and science museum networks worldwide

On 10 November in Paris, a conference organised with UNESCO will explore best practices in public engagement in sustainability science in a series of thought-provoking sessions. In addition, a worldwide citizen science experiment organised in partnership with the Globe Observer will involve thousands of people.

Read full article here

ICOM renews participation in “Musées (em)portables” Festival

New participation in « Musées (em)portables » Festival for ICOM

In 2017, for the second time, ICOM will participate in the “Portable Museum” (Musées (em)portables) Festival, through the creation of a special “ICOM Museums for All” award in 2016. The prize rewards films addressing how “non-traditional” audiences – socially marginalised groups, disabled people, immigrants, rural inhabitants, etc. – relate to museums, with sensitive and original takes on the theme.

The inauguration of the ICOM Museums for All Prize is part of ICOM’s efforts to make museums appealing to all publics. The competition is open to individual and group participants. The selected film will be broadcast widely through ICOM’s international channels.

Read full article here

ICOM congratulates the award winners of the Austrian Museum Quality Label!

The 2016 Austrian Museum Quality Label awards ceremony took place on Thursday, 6 October in Eisenstadt, coinciding with the 27th Austrian Museum Day.

Initiated by ICOM Austria (ICOM Österreich) in 2000, the Austrian Museum Seal is now a highly regarded distinction, highlighting the museums that comply with internationally valid standards for museums, particularly in terms of quality control and quality improvement. This “Museum Quality Label” attests to the museum's responsibility to preserve cultural heritage, as well as quality presentation and a minimum level of services expected in a museum, and respect for the ICOM Code of Ethics for Museums.

Sixteen Austrian museums were awarded this museum seal until 2021, and the museum seal of 17 museums has been extended for another five years. In total, 248 Austrian museums now bear the museum seal of approval. More information (in German):

International Museography Congress to be held in Spain

“The International Museum Conference of 1934, in perspective” is the title of a conference to be held at the Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando in Madrid, Spain, from 21 to 23 November, 2016.

The 1934 conference, considered to be the first ever international meeting of museography professionals, was a watershed moment in museum debate in the first half of the 20th century. Today’s take on museum trends will help to revive this international reflection and bring out today’s achievements while also highlighting museum management problems that we are still contending with. The International Museography Congress aims to pay homage to the professionals that gathered together in 1934 as well as offering a framework for reflection and analysis on museum and museum architecture issues dating from the 1930s to today. The congress is geared towards museum professionals, architects, curators, researchers and postgraduate students and, in general, other stakeholders in the fields of museography and museum architecture.

Registration is open until 11 November, 2016.

More information

F@IMP 2.0 is launched!

In 2016, the Hungarian National Museum will have the pleasure of hosting the new F@imp 2.0 online AVICOM Festival of Audiovisual International Multimedia Patrimony, for the second time in its history.

The festival highlights major achievements in the world of museology, and the awards ceremony will be held on the first day of AVICOM’s conference at the Hungarian National Museum, MUZEUM@DIGIT, to be held on 22 and 23 November, 2016.

The F@IMP 2.0 (Festival of Audiovisual International Multimedia Patrimony) is organised by AVICOM, the ICOM International Committee for audiovisual and new technologies for image and sound. F@imp 2.0 is a continuation and expansion of the original FIAMP (Festival International de l’Audiovisuel du Multimédia sur le Patrimoine), an international event aimed to encourage and recognise the production and distribution of audiovisual productions (audio, film and video) and innovative multimedia technologies (websites, interactive programmes, mobile applications and creative and interpretive exhibition installations) initiated or produced by museums or heritage and cultural institutions around the world.

The online F@imp 2.0 portal makes it possible for the international jury to efficiently judge the media products of the applicants. The competition is open to all ICOM institutional members. The awards ceremony will be held at the Hungarian National Museum during the Muzeum@Digit Conference, on 22 November, 2016 in Budapest.

More information:

First European mission for ICOM President

ICOM Germany’s Annual Conference was held at the Deutsches Technikmuseum in Berlin on 8 October, 2016, on the theme “From the World's fair to Science Lab. Trade – Industry – Museum”. ICOM President Suay Aksoy was invited to introduce the discussions as keynote speaker and special guest of the conference, stating that, as her first European mission, the event was highly meaningful for her. “ICOM Germany is not only our largest National Committee, but a most dynamic one at that. Just remember, the President before me was German, and Regine Schulz [of ICOM Germany] is the current Advisory Chair of ICOM.”

Speaking on the meeting’s theme, she insisted on its dynamism: “At a time when we are justly overwhelmed by concerns for cultural property protection, a totally different but equally significant aspect of museums’ existence in society will be discussed during this meeting, which, I believe, could eventually inform and contribute to the debate on the definition of museum within ICOM.”

On the occasion of the conference, the annual assembly of the ICOM German National Committee took place, and a new Chair was elected for three years: Prof. Dr Beate Reifenscheid-Ronnisch.

More information (in German):

The Best in Heritage 2016, “Projects of Influence”: a report by Luka Cipek

The 15th edition of the event took place in Dubrovnik, Croatia, from 22 to 24 September, 2016, gathering a wide scope of heritage professionals: 149 participants from 33 countries and various geographical and working environments. Forty-four laureates awarded in 2015 were featured in a packed three-day programme, representing almost all aspects of present-day best practices. The conference was organised in partnership with Europa Nostra (with support from the Creative Europe programme), and the ICOM Endowment Fund. The City of Dubrovnik reconfirmed its role as a perfect host, thanks to the enchanting atmosphere of its UNESCO World Heritage Site and local support from the City and Dubrovnik Museums.

With 15 years of success, The Best in Heritage conference has also been perceived as an additional occasion to evaluate the awarded projects from around the world that it annually gathers and presents in Dubrovnik. The professional public took pleasure in expressing its appreciation of excellence by proclaiming in each of the two parts of the conference programme the “Project of Influence” of the year – those judged as possessing the capacity to produce change.

The Best in Heritage conference in Dubrovnik has been an attractive mirror of the work of dozens of prestigious juries that award heritage projects from all over the world. It became evident that the international professional public, reinforced by expert moderators, is well-disposed to express its appreciation and preference in evaluating the presentations of 28 international projects, proclaiming one project as the “Project of Influence” of the year. The implied claim is that such a project has the potential to contribute decisively to change and advance professional practices by demonstrating its innovative and creative power of inspiration.

In addition to being a sensational archaeological discovery, the EU Prize for Cultural Heritage / Europa Nostra Award 2015 laureate, the Nuragic Sculptures of Monte Prama from Sardinia, Italy, presented by Dr Roberto Nardi, may well serve as a paradigm of integrated, dynamic conservation, exhibiting and community engagement. In a short period of time, it has succeeded in dynamising and enhancing the identity of Sardinia and placed its community on the map of desirable destinations, while energising its economic potential. Second place in number of votes was the Vietnamese Women’s Museum from Vietnam, and the third place went to the Karenina Live project from Russia. Both awards are recognitions of excellence and professionalism by an ambitious international professional public. Besides the two outstanding examples, most of the awarded projects presented possess a distinctive power of influence in professional strategies and practices, which renders them veritable change-makers. All of them received a Certificate of Participation and the Excellence Club plaque.

ICOM News on the move

ICOM News is transitioning to a new digital format. Stay tuned for details on the launch of the new online platform in the coming months!

In the meantime, we are featuring ICOM News articles on our website, and every month here in the newsletter. October brings us to Azerbaijan, where a unique museum project is highlighting the country’s celebrated carpet-making traditions.

If you wish to get involved as a contributor now or down the line, please contact Sara Heft:

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