Does the intelligence of museums have a price?

ICOM France cycle evening-debate deontology

How important is cultural planning for the future of museums?

The question was raised during the debate jointly organized by ICOM France and the Institut National du Patrimoine on June 3rd, 2021. With museums recovering from the crisis, the question of cultural planning takes another dimension, and professionals in the sector are now asking what can be made while respecting the values that make up the museums’ identities.

This evening-debate cycle invited experts to discuss their experiences of cultural planning within their organizations. Aside from these experiences, it was also a matter of apprehending both the potential and the limits of cultural planning.

During his intervention, Hervé Barbaret, Chief Executive Officer of France Muséums, pointed out the importance of cultural planning in the construction of a museum project. As an international museum consultancy and with its experience and its multi-disciplinary team, France Muséums supports cultural institutions of all sizes and in all territories. From the construction to the realization of their projects, we participate to the  animation  of this collective museum intelligence.

“Cultural planning is part of a general interest mission: to bring the public closer to artworks. The Museum of Louvre Abu Dhabi is an extraordinary project in terms of conceptual dimension, which radically renews what a universal museum is; in terms of architectural setting, thanks to one of Jean Nouvel’s most beautiful works; in terms of the richness of its programming; and above all, in terms of the numerous links created between the arts, the territories and history.”

The round table brought together experts from a wide range of fields to discuss these topics:

  • Claude Mollard, Special Advisor to the President of Institut du monde arabe
  • Jean-Hervé Lorenzi, Economist and founder of the Cercle des économistes
  • Hervé Barbaret, CEO of France Muséums
  • Agnès Saal, Senior Civil Servant for equality, diversity and the prevention of discrimination, head of the International Cultural Expertise Mission (MECI) at the General Secretariat of the Ministry of Culture
  • Antonio Rodriguez, President of ICEE – ICOM’s International Committee for Exhibition Exchange
  • Anaïs Aguerre, Founder and Director of the consulting agency Culture Connect
  • Michèle Antoine, Director of Exhibitions, Universcience
  • Laurence Chesneau-Dupin, Chief Curator of heritage and Director of LCD conseil
  • Moderation: Juliette Raoul-Duval, President of ICOM France, and Hélène Vassal, Secretary of ICOM France

Many thanks to ICOM France for holding this very enriching debate. The meeting summary is available in open access and digital format.