Thessaloniki Panel Discussion on ‘Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, Accessibility in Cultural Leadership’ at the CoMuseum International Conference 2023
Thessaloniki Panel Discussion on ‘Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, Accessibility in Cultural Leadership’ at the CoMuseum International Conference 2023 ©

Megapress Photo Agency, Pavlos Makridis

Museums Revisited is an intensive capacity building programme that explores the role of museums in society today. The programme responds to the lack of skills and opportunities for museum professionals in Europe; facilitates dialogue between UK and European museums; creates new networks and partnerships, including between museums and other cultural and civil society organisations; and influences policy change in relation to the role of museums in society, local development, tourism and creative industries.

A major feature of Museums Revisited is The CoMuseum, an international museum conference that the British Council has been running for over a decade in partnership with the US Embassy in Athens and the Benaki Museum.

In 2020, the CoMuseum was launched as a physical and digital platform for museums and cultural professionals. Its goal is to share the best ideas and practices from around the world, highlight contemporary challenges and create a global network of professionals that will co-design a ‘culture-edge’ future for our societies.

As part of the programme, the Tom Fleming Creative Consultancy carried out an extensive qualitative research exercise engaging over 200 museums across Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Poland, Portugal and Romania. The research focused on the skills gaps, challenges and key learning needs in each country. It explored how museums have responded to the Covid-19 crisis, how their roles are changing, and the types of collaboration and exchange museums are prioritising.

You can download the executive summary in the ‘Downloads’ section below.

Find out more about Museum Revisited.

CoMuseum 2023: Museums and Justice

The 13th CoMuseum International Conference – entitled Museums and Justice – took place from 6 to 8 December 2023. The conference was about justice and representation: being fair within and through museums and cultural organisations. As part of the conference, we discussed the degree to which DEIA (Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, Accessibility) principles are being considered or applied internally in cultural organisations in terms of employment, governance and programming, and how in turn this process, or lack of, affects cultural action around the world.

  • 6 December 2023: The conference took place at the Benaki Museum (138 Pireos Street, Athens) from 12.00 to 18.00 (EET).
  • 7 December 2023: A series of workshops and masterclasses were held at the Benaki Museum (138 Pireos Street, Athens) from 10.00 to 15.00 (EET).
  • 8 December 2023: The conference was held at the Thessaloniki Concert Hall in Thessaloniki from 11.30 to 15.00 (EET).
  • 8 December 2023: A series of masterclasses were held at the Thessaloniki Concert Hall in Thessaloniki from 15.00 to 16.30 (EET).

Part of the conference was live streamed. The languages of the conference were Greek, English and Greek Sign Language with simultaneous interpretation.

Speakers

The line-up of speakers included (in alphabetical order):

  • Michael Afolayan, Actor, Musician, Activist, Founder of the Anasa Cultural Center (GR)
  • Hanouf Al-Alawi, National Outreach Manager, The British Museum (UK)
  • Anders Bettum, Associate Professor, Cultural History and Museology, University of Oslo, Head of Network Minorities and Diversity, Museum of Oslo (Norway)
  • Giovanna Brambilla, Art Historian, Consultant in Pedagogies for Cultural Heritage, Member of the Knowledge Community of CCW (Cultural Welfare Center, Turin) (IT)
  • Anastasiia Cherednychenko, Historian, Museologist, Chair of the ICOM Ukraine (UA)
  • Epaminondas Christophilopoulos, Head, UNESCO Chair on Futures Research–FORTH | President, MOMus (GR)
  • Oana Drăgulinescu, Founder of Museum of Abandonment (RO)
  • Annie Fletcher, Director, Irish Museum of Modern Art (IMMA) (IE)
  • Andromache Gazi, Professor in Museology, Department of Communication, Media and Culture, Panteion University (GR)
  • Dr Sophia Handaka, CoMuseum Host, Curator of World Cultures, Benaki Museum (GR)
  • Iro Katsaridou, Director, MOMus-Thessaloniki Museum of Photography (GR)
  • Maria Kotti, Dancer, Exis Inclusive Dance Company (GR)
  • Eva Michailidou, Dance therapist, Dance teacher, Dancer, Exis Inclusive Dance Company (GR)
  • Karalyn Monteil, Head of Programmes & Stakeholders Outreach, UNESCO
  • Lizzy Moriarty, Independent Museum Consultant – Museum Expert, Museums Revisited, British Council (UK)
  • Elvira Dyangani Ose, Director, Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art, MACBA (ES)
  • Afroditi Panagiotakou, Director of Culture at the Onassis Foundation (GR)
  • Christos Papamichael, Artist – Director liminal (GR)
  • Micah Parzen, Chief Executive Officer, Museum of Us (U.S.A.)
  • Theo Prodromidis, Artist (GR)
  • Professor Dr Barbara Plankensteiner, Co-founder of the Benin Dialogue Group, Director of the MARKK Museum (DE)
  • Paraskevi Salavgia, Creator of self-help Documentary 'Two sides of the same world’, Disability Counsellor (GR)
  • Sarah Schleuning, The Margot B. Perot Senior Curator of Decorative Arts and Design, Dallas Museum of Art (U.S.A.)
  • Natalia Sielewicz, Curator, Head of Programming, Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw (PL)
  • Angelos N. Vassos, Director ‘Now’ Creativity Platform (GR)
  • Katerina Vrana, Stand-up Comedian (GR)
  • Esme Ward, Director, Manchester Museum, University of Manchester (UK)

The full programme of the three-day conference – including the full line-up of speakers – is available on the CoMuseum website.

Registration

Participation was free following registration.

Information

For further information, please contact Maria Papaioannou:

Email Maria.Papaioannou@britishcouncil.gr
Telephone 210 369 2336

If you’d like to stay up to date with all our museum events, join our Museum Professionals Network, and register for our Arts newsletter and/or CoMuseum newsletter.

The 13th International CoMuseum Conference was organised in partnership with the Benaki Museum and the Embassy of the United States. In collaboration with the Norwegian Embassy in Greece and Thessaloniki Concert Hall.

The recorded sessions from the 2023 conference will be available shortly. Watch the recorded sessions from the 2022 conference on the CoMuseum’s YouTube channel:

Esme Ward, Director, Manchester Museum, University of Manchester (UK) at the CoMuseum International Conference 2023
Esme Ward, Director, Manchester Museum, University of Manchester (UK) at the CoMuseum International Conference 2023 ©

Vicky Psichogiou

Elvira Dyangani Ose Director, Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art – MACBA (ES) at the CoMuseum International Conference 2023
Elvira Dyangani Ose Director, Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art – MACBA (ES) at the CoMuseum International Conference 2023 ©

Vicky Psichogiou

Katerina Vrana, Stand-up Comedian (GR) at the CoMuseum International Conference 2023
Katerina Vrana, Stand-up Comedian (GR) at the CoMuseum International Conference 2023 ©

Vicky Psichogiou