In the autumn this year (2018) the development of the museum component titled “Our museum” of “Museum and library development for everyone” project will be in the focus in several international professional conferences. The professional implementers of the project will be taking part at prestigious scientific conferences abroad from Dijon through Brighton and Frankfurt to Tartu as presenters and participants.
As consortium leader, the Museum Education and Methodology Centre (MOKK), Hungarian Open Air Museum (SZNM) has already made great efforts to have the methodology development taking place within the project promoted at different international forums. The methodology handbook entitled “Chance with museums – Convergence of disadvantageous groups with the tools of museum education” and the CultureBonus pilot programme was presented with great success at the conference „The Museum for All People – Art, Accessibility and Social Inclusion” by museum coordinator Rita Dabi-Farkas and staff of museum coordinator network Andrea Fülöp.
It is a high priority for MOKK that the members of its nationwide museum coordinator network obtain as much experience on the international scene as possible, get acquainted with best practices of museums, build professional relationships so that they can pass on the knowledge to their counterparts in Hungary. In 2018, altogether twelve museum coordinators have participated in the international conferences held in Granada titled „Inclusion as Shared Vision: Museums and Sharing Heritage” and in Tartu “Re-imagining the Museum in the Global Contemporary” organised by ICOM. In 2019, five more coordinators will have the opportunity to take part at similar events in Dijon, Brighton, London and Tartu. Thanks to the project, our museum coordinators can also go on study trips abroad every year; to Vienna in 2017, to Kolozsvár (Cluj) and Marosvásárhely (Tirgu Mures) in 2018, an in 2019 they will get an insight into the museum sphere of Amsterdam.
The growing influence and spread of sustainability as an institutional practice has been observed in recent years in the area of culture including the museum sphere. This year’s congress of ENCATC (European Network of Cultural Administration Training Centres) organized in Dijon focuses on these themes. The title of the conference is “Diversity and sustainability at work. Policies and practices from culture and education”. The international organization brings together more than 150 training centres specializing in cultural management of more than 40 countries.
The conference will look at what sustainability means in the cultural and creative sectors, and how this increasingly important factor can be accessible, how culture can contribute, by its own means, to the economic, social and environmental dimensions of sustainable development, and in the current, unstable, uncertain, complex and ambiguous world, how to rethink sustainability. Furthermore, the conference will also be discussing how to renew education and training programmes by using case studies, taking into account cultural diversity and its impact on sustainability.
Organically linked to the latter topic, Noémi Barbara Farkas will be giving a presentation on the CultureBonus pilot programme, one of the museum components of the “Museum and Library Development for Everyone” project. Until the end of 2019, a total of 6,000, mostly disadvantaged students in Northern Hungary and Northern Great Plain regions can attend museum education sessions free of charge within the pilot programme funded by the project.
One of the largest and the most significant conferences of the museum sphere is held also in October between 2 and 5 in Brighton, England on a similar topic to that of the Dijon conference, titled Sustainable and Ethical Museums in a Globalised World.
The event in Brighton will be focusing on such inspirational topics as renewable energies in relation to museums, the future of post-colonial museums, social responsibility of museums in the MeToo era. The conference participants will be given an insight into how children can cope with peer bullying with the aid of museums, and how museums can position themselves as community spaces so that they can be public venues of discussions in order to recognise problems and better understand the world. The conference includes practice-oriented seminars, which will provide great opportunities for our project implementers and museum coordinators, among other participants, to build professional relationships, network and get to know international best practices from the horse’s mouth.
In October between 22nd and 26th, in Frankfurt The Junges Museum will be housing the 12th Hands On! international museum conference All inclusive! Museums as spaces for ALL children. The event featuring professional discussions with museum professionals from 30 countries, will overview the latest developments in children’s museums and science visitors’ centres and new trends in this segment of the museum scene during plenary lectures, interactive presentations and exclusive museum visits.
In the spirit of the motto All inclusive! social inclusion and the special needs of different audiences will also be dealt with as a matter a priority. We will be exploring how children’s museums can use their collections to transfer cultural heritage knowledge. The conference will also address the question of how to design and operate truly all-inclusive exhibitions and museum facilities that can serve the widest range of needs. A further aim of the conference is to discuss innovative forms of instructing, in particular solutions for digital learning. In connection with the best practices section on equal access to culture, the CultureBonus pilot programme will be presented by Gabriella Kajári, Communications professional for the museum component of the Museum and Library Development for Everyone project; the presentation is entitled “CultureBonus – how museums can be made more accessible for disadvantaged children”.
In Tartu, at the 27th annual conference of NEMO, the Networks of European Museum Organizations, 7-10 November, sustainable development goals (SDGs), such as quality education, poverty eradication, reduction of inequalities and partnership will be in the focus. This year’s motto is “Museums 2030 – Sharing recipes for a better future”.
Acting director, Magdolna Nagy, Museum Education and Methodology Centre (MOKK), Hungarian Open Air Museum, and project manager of the “Museum and Library Development for Everyone, will give a presentation titled “How to Make Museums Accessible to Invisible Audiences” on 9th November within the European Project Slam: Courageous Museums. In her talk she will be presenting the activities of MOKK and the project regarding the disadvantaged. This year’s Museum Slam brings together five inspirational museum projects. Other speakers of the theme block will be museum representatives of the National Museum of Liberation in Maribor, the Skane Regional Museum in Sweden, the West Bohemian Museum in Pilsen, and the Cité des sciences et de l’industrie in Paris, Europe’s largest science museum.
The implementers of the museum component of the project EFOP-3.3.3-VEKOP-16-2016-00001 entitled “Museum and Library Improvements for Everyone” will participate in international conferences by the aid of European Union funds. The project is financed by a two billion HUF grant of the European Union between 1 February 2017 and 31 January 2020, and implemented within the cooperation of Museum Education and Methodology Centre (MOKK), Hungarian Open Air Museum (SZNM) and the Metropolitan Szabó Ervin Library. The project implementers are committed to increasing the role of equal opportunities, convergence of disadvantaged people and creating equal access to cultural goods.
Written by: Gabi Kajári, Museum Education and Methodology Centre, Hungarian Open Air Museum