During ICOM Kyoto 2019, a plenary session will be dedicated to the topic Museums and Sustainability.
We did a Q&A with the moderator of the session Henry McGhie, Founder of Curating Tomorrow, and Member of the ICOM Working Group on Sustainability
WHAT IS THE AIM OF THIS ACTIVITY?
Through this session, we want to support attendees to recognize the part that they have to play in imagining and creating a sustainable future. Everyone has a part to play, and we want to support them to play it, whatever their role, and wherever their museum is located.
WHY IS SUSTAINABILITY IMPORTANT FOR THE FUTURE OF TRADITION?
The concepts of heritage, tradition and sustainability are closely related, as the future is built on the foundations of the past in the present. We pass on our ideas, collections and traditions, but we also pass on the things that are more difficult to deal with: our waste, the results of our choices and lifestyles today. In that sense, sustainability and traditions are both related to inter-generational relationships, and positive and negative impacts. We are currently using the world in unsustainable ways. We see traditions and traditional knowledge disappearing faster than ever, just as nature is under threat. But, there is still hope. Traditions and material culture in museums are a tremendous source of information and inspiration on positive relationships between people, peoples and nature. We can draw on these to imagine and begin to create desirable futures, whatever our context is.
Every museum, every museum worker, and every museum network has a part to play in creating a desirable future, desirable for themselves and for those impacted by their work. Working towards sustainability, and the Sustainable Development Goals, helps museums articulate what they are for, and makes museums stronger.
ICOM KYOTO 2019
Between the 1st and the 7th of September 2019, Kyoto (Japan) will host the biggest and most important conference of museums in the world. More than 3.000 museum professionals and experts from all international backgrounds will participate in this triannual event, the 25th General Conference of ICOM. After 24 successful editions, ICOM’s flagship conference has become a worldwide reputed hub for exchange about the topical issues museums tackle today, as well as the most innovative solutions.