Shanghai University and the International Council of Museums headquartered in Paris, France, jointly launched an international museum research and exchange center in Shanghai on Thursday.
Said to be the first global platform of its kind in the field, the center will perform research on international cultural heritage and promote related disciplines of museums across the world, said Duan Yong, deputy Party secretary of Shanghai University and vice chair of the management committee of the center, during the launch ceremony.
Duan said the center will also focus on the cultivation of museum leaders and accelerating information sharing in cutting-edge scientific research achievements across the globe.
"International museum think tanks and academic networks will be developed as well," said Guan Qiang, deputy director of National Cultural Heritage Administration.
With COVID-19 pandemic resulting in temporary closures of museums around the world, Alberto Garlandini, chair of the council, said museums are experiencing "the most serious crisis" in history.
"Museum professionals are working miracles all over the world and museums are changing by innovating their policies, strategies, the role in serving the society and its sustainable development in the future," said Garlandini via a video.
"Practitioners are promoting audience participation and museum accessibility, and exploring solutions for the new reality. We need global cooperation and information sharing at the global research network now and the center will certainly be a milestone in the development of heritage and museums."
"We will work with Shanghai University, one of the first universities in China to provide museum studies, in service of the world museum community," he said.
According to Lu Jiansong, professor in cultural heritage and museology at Fudan University, the number of museums in China has increased to 5,553 in 2019, up from 1,397 in 1990.