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The status of museums, as cultural tenets, is poised on a delicate balance between politics (from government policy and decisions to exhibition display and presentation to the public) and the need to maintain integrity and independence.

The relationship between governments and cultural institutions can largely determine the museum’s role within the communities they serve and the type of services they provide, especially in countries where museums are dependent on government policy.

In this issue, authors from Greece, Russia, China, the United States, Latin America, Zimbabwe and Benin discuss how museums can respond to public policy and find alternatives to government pressure and funding cuts in the areas of human rights, international relations, national identity, education, indigenous rights, natural resources and cultural policy.

ICOM UK members can enjoy full access to this issue through their personal member space on ICOMMUNITY.

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