Foreign Minister Heiko Maas issued the following statement today (27 April) on The Museums Lab, the new exchange and education programme for young African and German museum professionals:
With The Museums Lab, we are creating a new, multilateral form of cooperation between African and German museums. As stakeholders from the spheres of politics, culture and civil society, we are together establishing a platform for joint learning and further training. Our objective is nothing less than what we already set out to do in the coalition agreement; namely, to engage in cultural exchange and thereby make progress on the path of coming to terms with our colonial history.
The exchange and education programme The Museums Lab is aimed at young museum professionals from more than ten African countries as well as from Germany. The aim of the programme, which will launch in May 2021 with 25 participants, is to place a new emphasis on mutual learning between Africa and Europe. The initiative represents an important step in the development of Germany’s International Museum Cooperation Agency (AIM). This will bring together museums as well as scientific and cultural institutions.
The Museums Lab is run by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), the Museum für Naturkunde – Leibniz Institute in Berlin and the Master’s Programme in Museum Management and Communication at the University of Applied Sciences (HTW) Berlin, in close cooperation with the African consultancy group The Advisors. A range of outstanding African and European experts are involved in the project along with various cultural institutions including the German Federal Cultural Foundation (KSB), the Cultural Foundation of the Länder (KSL), the Goethe-Institut and the Institute for Foreign Relations (ifa).
The project is financed by the German Federal Foreign Office in close collaboration with the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development and the Minister of State for Culture and the Media.