Universeum Network Meeting

Krakow, Poland, 16-18 October 2008

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Ladies and gentlemen.

It is my pleasure to announce that according to our talks in Lisbon the annual Universeum Network Meeting will take place in Cracow on 16-18 October 2008.

We suggest the following subject of our meeting:

University museums – diversity or/and uniformity?

Creating an university museum’s  image.

  We would like the meeting in Cracow to be a platform for consideration, how university museums are and how should they be perceived?

Two threads are to be taken into consideration:

  We should consider the role and the position of our museums, which are (in rule) obliged to fulfill the statutory duties of ICOM, among other state museums. In which way our university museums are “distinguished” from other similar institutions?

University museums, being incorporated into higher education structures, should “serve” the academic community (that is, university management, academic staff and students). It seems worthy to analyze, what is our possible influence on the development of the parent university, documenting its present day (this particular aspect seems to be crucial and very difficult in practice). The awareness, in which way a museum is accepted by the academic community, is of great importance to us. This will allow us to create image of an “university” museum. We should answer the question, what is the responsibility and the position of museum staff, how much is it possible to build the sense of scientific and historical heritage in local community.

How does the society perceive our activities (local audience, tourists)? What should be the form, in which way to participate and to growth within rapid social development we are witnessing presently? Should we reach for universal scientific, cultural and historical resources in our museum activity, or rather focus on narrow academic area? What are expectations of our audience – of its full spectrum?

We will try to answer the above-mentioned questions looking on our museums both from local and global perspectives.

 Stanisław Waltoś

Jagiellonian University Museum

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