ASEMUS Executive Committee Meeting, 2007

At the 10th Executive Committee meeting, members discussed the Virtual Collection of Masterpieces (VCM) project and the relationship between VCM and ASEMUS.

 Minutes of the meeting below:

Minutes ASEMUS 10th Executive Committee Meeting

Gyeonggi, Korea, September 15th, 2007

 Participants: Azizah Fauziah, Brian Durrans (representing British Museum), Chong Phil Choe, Corazon Alvina (Chair), Eva Gesang-Karlström, Jean Anes, Katelijn Verstraete, Kenson Kwok, Steven Engelsman, Severine Le Guevel (representing Musee Quai Branly), Karl Magnusson (Secretariate). Special Invitees: Manus Brinkman (VCM project), Jos Teakema (VCM project)

Regrets: Chen Xiejun, representative of Japan, Stephane Martin.

 1. Opening of the meeting, approval of the agenda

The 10th Excom meeting was initially divided in two parts in order to cover both planning and follow-ups of the VCM launch and the general conference. However, the meeting on the 13th of September was purely preparatory in character with no decisions taken. Therefore the minutes are solely from the meeting on the 15th.

Due to fact that all ASEMUS projects were presented and discussed during the general conference the two items focused around the projects were removed from the agenda. In addition the ASEMUS website was discussed under the heading “VCM and ASEMUS”. With these changes the agenda was approved.

2. Previous meeting

Minutes from previous meeting (Paris, France) adopted.

 3. Results of the conference – relationship ASEMUS/VCM

The general opinion of the Excom was that the conference and the launch was a success. A special word of thanks is of course due to the local organisers as well as to the staff of ASEF. The enthusiasm among participants for the VCM is apparent, not at least from institutions that have not yet been part of the ASEMUS network. Obviously, the VCM can work as a catalyst for bringing new members to the general network and through that also to new cooperation projects e.g. the interest shown in the Education Exchange.

By the launch the first phase of the VCM is completed. At the meeting Steven Engelsman presented a proposal aimed to sustain the project financially by forming a consortium of some leading museums. These museums will through an annual contribution of about 10.000 Euro take a leading role in the further development of the project. The core group will act as trustees of all participants/contributors in the project and be as inclusive in decision making as possible. With regard to equal representation from Asia and Europe in the consortium, the position will be pragmatic – “those who pay have a say”. This construction also opens up a possibility that VCM might go beyond the ASEF criteria for membership in projects in the future.

In the proposal presented by Steven Engelsman a rough estimate is that of about 100.000 Euro per year is needed to sustain VCM. At present, this amount is almost secured for the coming three years according to Engelsman.

The success and rapid development of VCM highlights the relationship of VCM to the present ASEMUS website. The site is coordinated and administered by the Secretariat and has been funded by ASEF and the Swedish National Museum of World Culture since 2004. The contract was due 1st of July this year and the partners are at present discussing the future content and operation of the site. The future focus will be to provide a useful and efficient website for ASEMUS members with features such as a “looking or partner” of new projects and more specific information on membership institutions. A frequent cross linking with the VCM site will help to use specific databases and other relevant information mutually.

A general report from the VCM launch/general conference will be compiled by the Secretariat and published on the website.

 4. Executive committee issues

At present the ASEMUS Executive Committee has 12 members. There are five members from Asia (one vacant) and five members from Europe, the ASEF Director of Cultural Exchange, and the Secretary. In addition the main coordinator for the ASEMUS network at ASEF has always been present at Executive Committee meetings.

In the ASEMUS Mission Statement for 2004-2007, it is stated that the Executive Committee shall serve for three years and that the holders of the office of Chairperson and Vice Chairperson shall alternate between Asian and European members. The present Executive Committee serves for the period from the autumn 2005 and three years onwards. One of the mains tasks during this period of service is to find a structural scheme for the appointment of new members to the Executive Committee. In doing this it is necessary to find a balance between renewal and continuity.

After a thorough discussion, the Excom decided to open up one position from Asia and one position from Europe for new appointments. This means that two participants in the present Excom will leave. The present Chair will investigate who and report back to Excom. The fact that two positions are up for appointment will then be advertised as an open call to the network through all possible channels. Members are free to propose other institutions as well as their own as candidates. The final decision lies in the Excom that will decide on the composition of ASEMUS Excom for the period 2008-2011 at a meeting during the fall of 2008.

 5. Future activities of ASEMUS

The Travelling Exhibition “Self and Other” will open in Osaka, Japan in the fall 2008. After touring in Japan, it will travel to Thailand and Malaysia and then come to Sweden in 2010. At present a possible venue in London is investigated.

Two more partnerships within the Education Exchange are about to start viz. National Museum in Manila and Musee Quai Branly, Paris and Sejong University Museum, Seoul and the Tropen Museum in Amsterdam

The National Museum of the Philippines is planning to host a general ASEMUS conference in the fall 2008. A possible theme for this meeting is ICT and the needs and possibilities for museums. The aim is to bring together ICT staff with museum curators and directors.

 6. Next meeting

Next meeting for the ASEMUS Excom is planned to take place in the Philippines in March 2008. Another option is to have the meeting in conjunction with the general conference mentioned above.

 Karl Magnusson

Secretary of ASEMUS

Gothenburg 2007-09-28


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