ITP Newsletter 2021: COVID-19
Call for Submissions
Deadline: 6 May 2021

There’s still time to submit an article for issue 8 of the ITP Newsletter!

Theme

The theme for this year’s ITP Newsletter will be COVID-19.

The background

As COVID-19 began to affect lives across the globe in unprecedented ways, museums around the world started collecting both physical and digital objects, and experiences of the pandemic. Working with the ITP network, the BM and UK Partners, we held an online session in September 2020 to discuss themes relating to the varied global responses to the pandemic. Colleagues shared their stories; aims and objectives; ethical considerations and reflections on their learning for the future.

Our recent ITP network careers survey unveiled many of the fantastic projects that ITP fellows are working on including 19 COVID-19 specific projects or programmes. This included lectures, posters, volunteering, webinars, photography, seminars on COVID-19 precautions, relief funds, exhibitions, social media projects, workshops to raise awareness around COVID-19 safety, COVID-collecting, Children’s projects, mental health awareness, conferences, special needs workshops, staff testing, and e-learning training; the ITP Newsletter can highlight these further.

This year’s guest editors

Following the COVID-Collecting session, a small working group convened to look at how to take this discussion forward.  We looked at outputs that reflect the impact of the pandemic on societies and museums, as embodied by both tangible and intangible heritage. This group, below, will be this year’s guest editors and the 8th ITP Newsletter will be the output tying these conversations and ideas together.

  • Shambwaditya Ghosh, PhD Scholar, University of Delhi (India, ITP Fellow 2012 & Senior Fellow 2015)
  • Khadijeh Zohreh Baseri, Officer, Golestan Palace (Iran, ITP Fellow 2007)
  • Ishaq Mohammad Bello, Assistant Chief Technical Officer: Education, National Museum Kaduna (Nigeria, ITP Fellow 2012)
  • Solomy Nansubuga Nabukalu, Conservator, Kabale Museum (Uganda, ITP Fellow 2018)
  • Siddhant Shah, Museum Access Consultant and Founder, Access For ALL (India)
  • Shreen Mohamed Amin Taher, Director of the Children’s Museum, Egyptian Museum, Cairo (Egypt, ITP Fellow 2016)

We invite you to write about any of the themes below which would all be under the main heading of Global perspectives and must be maximum 500 words:

Themes & explanations:

  • Isolation, health and wellbeing – how has the pandemic affected physical and mental health over the past 12 months? Consider how the changes caused by the pandemic have affected people mentally worldwide and how being in isolation has affected both people and their work. What kinds of health and wellbeing related projects, staff care or public/community care have the cultural sector offered? What has helped you cope during this time? Perhaps you have worked on something to help others cope.
  • Communities – how has the virus affected museums relationships with their local communities? How have they reached these communities and kept them involved?
  • COVID & inclusion –  recording and documenting objects, products, and services related to inclusion in times of an ongoing pandemic. How can the arts and culture sector remain accessible and inclusive during this time?
  • Museum responses to COVID – measures that museums have taken around the world to rise to the challenge of COVID and protect their staff and visitors whilst continuing to deliver their projects and programme.
  • COVID online – the online response to the pandemic and how museums have used digital tools to support and engage both staff and visitors. Have you moved your projects and programmes online? How have you engaged with your audiences digitally? How have staff and colleagues worked together using digital technology? How have staff been supported and kept connected online?

Your Collection in Focus will feature in the Newsletter as always, and this year must relate to COVID-19. This is where our theme of collecting masks and their stories from across the ITP network would sit but we are inviting you to write about anything you have collected during this period – both tangible or intangible or about objects from your collection that tell a story that relates to the current pandemic.

Please also send updates to feature under the following three headings, which don’t relate to COVID and is an opportunity for the you to share your news:

• Bulletin Board, short submissions; tell us what is happening in your institution, i.e gallery refurbishments, exhibitions, community work, special events.

• Global network news, short descriptions updating us on your personal and professional news – awards, job changes, promotions, courses started and completed, and any information that you think the ITP alumni might like to know about.

• Meet-ups around the world – if you meet with an ITP network colleague please let us know and share your networking. Who did you meet, where and why?

Please include three or four good quality, high-resolution (A4, 300dpi) photographs with captions with each submission.

The deadline is Thursday 6th May 2021