Instruments of Development of a Regional Museum Community

Photo by Dmitri Lebedev, 19.02.2006

Photo by Dmitri Lebedev, 19.02.2006

How to broaden audiences? How to connect museum professionals? How to improve museum work and finally – how to monitor and measure success?
At the Museum and Politics conference, Irina A. Sizova and Oksana S. Ulyanova of the National Research Tomsk State University in Russia will share with us their experiences in developing a museum community in the Tomsk region, southeast of the West Siberian Plain. For the blog they provided us the abstract of their paper. In which regions of the world do you see similar efforts to create such a community? What works well, what doesn’t?

The development of the Russian regional museum community demands attention of museum experts. However universal instruments of this purpose don’t exist. Therefore in various regions of Russia there are local instruments for development of the museum community, which are applied taking into account policy and economic factors.

This paper consists of three sections a) the list of instruments of development of local museum community on the example of the Tomsk region was defined (week of the museums, a museum forum, museum association, Internet space); b) developed a technique of use of each instrument, process of preparation and carrying out studied actions are described; c) the analysis of efficiency of studied instruments in the course of association of regional museum community is provided. Continue reading

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


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