International Centre for the Study of the Preservation and Restoration of Cultural Property

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Over 60% of museum collections worldwide are at risk because of overcrowding and poor storage conditions. In this situation, museums cannot ensure the protection of their collections, especially in emergency situations. In addition, with up to 90% of their collections hidden away and unaccessible in storage, museums are missing out this essential resource for connecting with their communities.

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Location: Vadadora (Baroda), Gujarat, India

There are more than 55000 museums in the world (Museums of the World directory by De Gruyter). Since the 1980s, collections and museums have been increasing exponentially. However, an ICCROM survey (2010) indicated that 60% of these collections worldwide are at risk because of overcrowding and poor storage conditions. In this situation, museums cannot ensure the protection of their assets, one of their fundamental functions, especially in emergency situations. With up to 90% of their collections hidden in the storage and unaccessible, museums are deprived of an essential resource for connecting with their communities.

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Location: Lisbon, Portugal

While the number of collections and museums are growing exponentially, a 2010 ICCROM survey indicated that 60% of collections world-wide are at risk because of overcrowding and poor storage conditions. In this situation, museums can neither ensure the protection of their assets, nor use them for research or education.

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For most museums around the world, caring for – and ensuring the accessibility of – collections in storage is a major challenge. Small museums are particularly vulnerable, because of their limited resources and access to expertise. On the other hand, small museums are resourceful, well connected, and powerful voices in their community.

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While the number of collections and museums are growing exponentially, an ICCROM survey (2010) indicated that world-wide, 60% of collections are at risk because of overcrowding and poor storage conditions. In this situation, museums cannot ensure the protection of their assets, nor use them for research or education. Furthermore, in case of emergency, no sound response can be implemented. In order to assist the smaller museums worldwide to address this situation, ICCROM and UNESCO developed RE-ORG, a step-by-step methodology.The focus of RE-ORG is on making improvements to existing storage areas, and not on planning and building new facilities.