On 31 January 2017, ICCROM’s Director-General, Stefano De Caro, signed an agreement with the Swiss university programme SUPSI (Scuola universitaria professionale della Svizzera italiana, or University of Applied Sciences and Arts of Italian Switzerland). Signing the agreement on behalf of SUPSI were its Chairman of the Board, Alberto Petruzzella, and the Director of SUPSI, Franco Gervasoni.
The agreement has the specific goal of forging a partnership between ICCROM and SUPSI, aimed at making use of each other’s expertise and facilities for conducting educational activities and research, not only in the field of conservation and restoration, but also for preventive conservation and techniques for managing museum collections.
The agreement is already becoming operational, and the possibility of establishing a certification of Advanced Studies (CAS) is currently under examination. This certification will be jointly developed by the two institutions in 2017. The goal of this certification is to train professionals in museum storeroom reorganization, further enhancing the work done by ICCROM through the RE-ORG program, as well as that carried out by SUPSI with the Collections Management Laboratory as part of the Bachelor’s Degree Course in Conservation-Restoration of Cultural Heritage.
Gaël de Guichen, Special Advisor the Director-General of ICCROM, recalled that 90% of museum collections are kept in storage, and that unfortunately in 60% of cases there are serious issues related to their conservation and use. This is a situation that can be found in all countries, he emphasized.
Director-General De Caro is delighted with this collaboration. “For over 50 years, ICCROM has been developing and implementing innovative training programmes for professionals working in cultural heritage conservation. The Re-ORG programme has already been implemented in more than 40 museums on five continents. This collaboration with SUPSI will include the RE-ORG method in a university programme for the very first time, along with teaching it in Italian.”