Europa Nostra and ViMM- Virtual Multimodal Museum sign a Joint Statement stressing the role of digital technologies for the future of cultural heritage

On 1 May 2019, Europa Nostra and ViMM – Virtual Multimodal Museum signed a Joint Statement in Brussels, highlighting the role of digital technologies for the future of cultural heritage. The statement was prepared as ViMM’s response to the Berlin Call to Action “Cultural Heritage for Future of Europe”. As stressed in the Joint Statement, ViMM and Europa Nostra will continue developing synergies for the benefit of Europe’s (digital) cultural heritage.

Europa Nostra and ViMM - Virtual Multimodal Museum sign a Joint Statement

The EU-funded ViMM – Virtual Multimodal Museum is a highly visible and participative initiative that brings together Europe’s and the world’s leading public and private organisations working on Virtual Museums and in the wider sector of Digital Cultural Heritage, to support policy development and decision-making in the field.

At the beginning of 2019, ViMM prepared a statement in response to the Berlin Call to Action “Cultural Heritage for Future of Europe” from the perspective of digital cultural heritage and related digital technologies. Europa Nostra welcomed this response as an excellent example of the positive influence and wide public endorsement of the Berlin Call to Action, launched by Europa Nostra and its partners the German Cultural Heritage Committee (DNK) and the Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation (SPK) in June 2018 on the occasion of the European Year of Cultural Heritage.

This response was then signed as a Joint Statement on 1 May 2019 in Brussels by Europa Nostra’s Secretary General, Sneška Quaedvlieg-Mihailović and Vice-President, Piet Jaspaert, and by Marinos Ioannides from the UNESCO Chair on Digital Cultural Heritage at the Cyprus University of Technology, which is coordinating ViMM.

The Joint Statement stresses the need for a better understanding of digital cultural heritage and its significance for Europe’s economy and society, and outlines a series of actions to tap the potential of rapidly emerging technologies for the benefit of Europe’s shared heritage. Among these recommendations, the Joint Statement underlines the need to carry out research on how understandable technology applications are, as well as their usability and their impact on participation.

Likewise, the Joint Statement calls for proper strategic investment and sustained funding for digital cultural heritage at all levels, and for the development of policies that incentivise funding from public and private sectors in this field.

Europa Nostra, as the Voice of Cultural Heritage in Europe will continue working with ViMM to ensure that these issues are underlined through this “digital” Berlin Call and the European Framework for Action on Cultural Heritage.

Read the Joint Statement here.

Background

ViMM – Virtual Multimodal Museum, funded under the EU Horizon 2020 programme, is an initiative coordinated by the UNESCO Chair of Digital Cultural Heritage based at the Cyprus University of Technology.

For the past two years, the project conducted research and consultation with a view to convert it into strategic guidance for the European Commission and the wider cultural heritage community on the future direction of Digital Cultural Heritage. The ViMM Closing Conference took place on 14-15 February 2019 in Vienna and was attended by Graham Bell, Board member of Europa Nostra, who contributed to the initiative as a digital cultural heritage expert.

Among the main outcomes of the project were the ViMM Manifesto for Digital Cultural Heritage and an EU Roadmap and Action Plan, which were validated last February 2019 as well as the Joint ViMM -Europa Nostra Statement on Cultural Heritage for the future of Europe.

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