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FAQs for Presenters and Attendees


We’ve had questions from several presenters about the details of the conference, so we asked conference organizer Afanasy Gnedovsky of ICOM-Russia to help us develop this FAQ.  If you have more questions, please ask in the comments below and we’ll find out the answers as we can.  Of course, don’t forget to check out the conference website as more information is added on a regular basis.   Thanks Afanasy!

How long should my presentation be?

  • All speakers in the section parts of the conference will each have 25 minutes. You could choose whatever format works best for you– 15 min + 10 min for discussion or 20 min + 5 min for discussion.  But people will have questions so please leave some time for discussion.

If I want to use Powerpoint, Prezi or other media in my presentation, can I?  How and where should it be submitted in advance?  How far in advance?  Can you use materials in Mac formats?

  • Yes of course, you can use ppt. We ask all speakers to send their presentation in advance; the deadline is 25th of August. Please send your material (I use this word, because that could be not only ppt, but also a film or audio file, or pdf or something else). You could send us in any mac format, we will change it into ppt. You could send your presentation to: and   If your presentation is to large to email, please use a file sharing system such as Dropbox.

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Weekly News Roundup: June 23, 2014

whc2014_qhapaq_nan_bolivia06UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee inscribes new cultural and natural sites to the World Heritage List including the six-nation nomination in South America, the Qhapac Ñan, Andean Road System; Bolgar Historical and Archaeological Complex, (Russia);  Decorated Cave of Pont d’Arc, known as Grotte Chauvet-Pont d’Arc, Ardeche (France); Pergamon and its Multi-Layered Cultural Landscape (Turkey); and Myanmar’s first entry to the list, Pyu Ancient Cities. Sites on the list now number over 100.

Are science museums skittish about climate change?  Does it depend on where their financial support comes from?

What does 3D printing mean for the future of contested artifacts?

Italy does away with the free entrance for EU citizens over 65 and introduces more flexible opening times. Moreover, the government wants more private companies to take care of Italy’s art and promises tax breaks for patrons.

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Weekly News Roundup: June 16, 2014

Mini plastic men and a woman standing on piles of money

With an ongoing imbalance at museum director level and discrepancies in pay, gender issues deserve more mind space.  

Protestors invade British Museum, with Viking boat, to protest BP’s sponsorship of Viking exhibit.

Cabinet of Curiosities (How Disability Was Kept in a Box) a new exhibit by artist Matt Fraser draws UK archives and museums to take a look at a long-ignored topic.

Izolyatsia, a cultural center in Donetsk, Ukraine, was directly targeted and taken over at gunpoint by the “Donetsk People’s Republic,”  endangering contemporary art installations, buildings, staff and free expression.

United States government considers LGBT historic sites for designation.

On June 13-14, the UnStraight Museum Conference in the UK was held.  Videos from presentations are here.

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Money, Market, or Mission? Museums in a Changing World

ethicsGuest blogger Sally Yerkovich is director of the Institute of Museum Ethics, founded at Seton Hall University in 2007.  The Institute promotes accountability, responsibility, and sustainability in museums by:convening conversations about critical ethical issues facing museums today, and creating a physical and virtual community of emerging and practicing museum professionals and museum studies faculty who can use our resources to make informed decisions about ethical matters.  This post is the first in our series of posts from accepted Museums and Politics conference speakers.  Sally will be speaking on “Is there a Future for Museum Ethics?”  and, as you’ll see, there’s much to ponder. We’re particularly interested in hearing perspectives from around the world. Please share your comments!

Since its inception, the Institute has hosted three international conferences and a number of lectures.  It has also generated courses on museum ethics and cultural heritage, initiated dialogues about contemporary ethical issues for museums through its website and listserv, and collaborated with the Center for the Future of Museums of the American Association of Museums on a nationwide forecasting exercise on future ethical issues.

The Institute maintains a LinkedIn group for discussions about museum ethics in the news as well as Facebook and Twitter accounts.  We post news articles on regularly and also maintain a listserv.  The Institute offers confidential consultations regarding ethical issues in museums.

The Institute of Museum Ethics maintains that ethical issues underpin all aspects of work in museums — from governance to education, registration to exhibitions, finances to operations and visitor services.

Whether in day-to-day decision-making or forging an overarching mission, museum ethics are about an institution’s relationship with people — individuals and groups in the communities a museum serves as well as its staff and board members.

We define museum ethics through principles of conduct related to individual and institutional behavior, such as integrity, accountability, loyalty, honesty, and responsibility.  We provide the tools to identify operative ethical principles, and we keep abreast of issues in the field as well as larger societal changes in order to anticipate the emergence of circumstances that might have an impact upon ethical practice in museums. Continue reading

Weekly News Roundup: June 9, 2014

IMG_2415The Hermitage’s director talks museums and politics.

A fascinating look at Soviet-era museums.  Are they now museums of museums?

Nazi-Art in a museum in Kleve? Is it allowed to display art from National Socialist artists?

Nina Simon interviews Eric Siegel of the New York Hall of Science on the museum’s e-book project False Conviction: Innocence, Guilt, and Science.

“At Home in Holland,”  a new student digital history project in Amsterdam, responds to the way that hostile reactions to immigrants have undermined the traditional idea of Dutch tolerance and hospitality in recent years.

What role do museums have in our philanthropic thoughts?  R.J. Stein takes a thoughtful look at the good museums can do in the world (and reminds us that not all museums are good at doing good.)

Orhan Pamuk, keynote speaker at the Museums and Politics conference,  about his “museum of innocence.”

A useful list of resources for museums and controversy, via Australia’s Lynda Kelley.

Imitating a famous painting, a Luxembourg artist exposes her genitals at the Musée D’Orsay in Paris; won’t face charges but removed from gallery.

Sweden returns ancient textiles to Peru.

Image:  A nautical diorama at the Museum of the Arctic and Antarctic in St Petersburg by Konstantin Budarin

1914-2014 – Der Weltkrieg im Museum

Eröffnung der Ausstellung im Deutschen Historischen Museum

Eröffnung der Ausstellung im Deutschen Historischen Museum

In der letzten Woche hat das Deutsche Historische Museum eine große Ausstellung zur Geschichte des Ersten Weltkrieges eröffnet. Zwar thematisiert die Ausstellung selbst die Ereignisse zwischen 1914 und 1918, doch hat die internationale Zusammenarbeit bei den Vorbereitungen der Ausstellung mit Leihgaben vieler Länder, darunter Großbritannien, Frankreich, Polen und Russland, auch die Frage einer gemeinsamen europäischen Erinnerung aufs Neue gestellt. Vor dem Hintergrund der anhaltenden Diskussion über eine kollektive europäische Identität ist dies ein durchaus politisches Thema für viele Museen. Continue reading

Weekly News Roundup: June 2, 2014

SAL_2010_050-1The 9/11 Museum’s Gift Shop is controversial, but the Guardian actually spoke to museum visitors about what they purchased there.  What they purchase–and the reasons why– might surprise you.

The Berlin Senate considers the controversial plans for a “Body Worlds” Museum in the basement of the television tower in Berlin to be a private affair: “The planned museum is a private museum and is […] not set up on public land,” they say. As long as no fundamentally unlawful aspects play a role, the Senate holds back with judgments on exhibitions.” The tourism agency Visit Berlin, the CDU party as well as churches in the surroundings strongly speak against this project.

On June 6, Portland Art Museum’s fifth year of Shine A Light asks audiences to rethink what is possible in an art museum.  Dance, karaoke,  healing rituals and arm wrestling with artists are just a few of the artist-generated projects on tap

How to save money and not to close a museum?

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Weekly News Roundup: May 27, 2014

Image-2-Emley_loosepageA fascinating new website takes a look at photographs, colonial legacies and museums in contemporary European culture.

The V & A Museum begins a program–and gallery exhibit- of rapid response collecting.  Among the first objects:  Primark jeans made in the Bangladesh factory consumed by fire last year.

Probably an act of terror: murder in the Jewish museum in Belgium.

An exhibition at the Arp Museum in Rolandseck shows the presentation of violence in the history of art.

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The Museum as Forum – Does It Exist?

1599px-Raphael_School_of_AthensAs I looked at the mission statement for the Museums and Politics project, as well as at a list of the possible topics that might be covered, the phrase “museum as forum” leapt to mind. The whole idea of a project on museums’ links with politics and power seems to me to be predicated on the cluster of ideas that has emerged around the idea of “museum as forum.” Canadian museologist Duncan Cameron’s article, “The Museum, a Temple or the Forum?” launched this concept into the museum world in 1971, and a quick Google search illustrates how seminal this work has been. While Cameron proposed that museums create “the forum,” for experimentation, innovation, and a more open approach to the public, he saw this as a dimension existing alongside museums’ traditional role as temples of learning and culture. Over the years his idea has inspired a vision of the museum that downplays or entirely eliminates the “temple” role, redefining museums (at least in theory) as places of open or shared authority, increased collaboration with audiences, greater responsiveness to their communities, generators of public value, and centers for civic dialogue. See for example the two books edited by Karp, Kreamer, and Levine, Exhibiting Cultures and Museums and Communities. The qualities mentioned above are discussed in the works to which I’ve provided links, as well as in countless other books, conferences, journal articles, and blogs published since the later years of the 20th century. Continue reading

Weekly News Roundup: May 12, 2014

P1020561Museums around the world celebrate International Museum Day on May 18, with Museum Nights, special programs, and much, much more.  Consider the issues of power and politics as you visit!

Debate about the planned, private Body World Museum of Gunther von Hagens in the centre of Berlin: Churches, politicians and Berlin’s tourism industry find such a museum tasteless, lurid, and impious.

One million visitors a year come to the Acropolis in Athens, but a bomb threat last week showed that well-visited museums could also be targets for terrorism.

Porchia Moore’s thoughtful reflection “ Performing Blackness: Museums, Mammies and Me,”  makes a thought-provoking read, no matter where you’re from.

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