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IMD Think Piece by Dr. Joy Chih-Ning Hsin, Chief of Education and Extension Division, National Museum of History, Taiwan

Times of crisis, like COVID-19, present huge challenges for museums’ resilience.  Museums in Taiwan, relatively speaking, survived during this pandemic due to an early and fast response from the government on epidemic prevention for all.  Most museums remain open with limited attendants and social distancing on the one hand, and the transfer into digital services on the other.  The National Museum of History (NMH) has been closed for a three-year renovation since 2018, although the museum maintains its relevance through outreach exhibitions and programs during its closure, and online exhibitions and learning resources, in particular, to cope with the situation of COVID-19.

To echo the themes of IMD 2020, NMH interprets the conditions in museums for equality as departing from an understanding of diversity, followed by putting inclusion into practice.  Cheng-Nan district, in which NMH is located, is a unique area, triggering many people’s emotions and memories.  The museum takes a collaborative approach, choosing senses as mediators, and organizing a series of programs entitled Fun Cheng-Nan: Feast YOUR senses and understand OTHERS, which begins with online resources (https://funchengnan.nmh.gov.tw/feastyoursenses/) in May and following up with onsite activities until the end of 2020.  Our reflections of diversity include museum professionals, collaborative partners, customized and multi-format activities, different venues, and, of course, a diverse audience to observe, interpret, and co-create senses of Cheng-Nan.  The NMH as a hub of equality, bringing diverse people together, can explore possibilities about every little thing in Cheng-Nan and, furthermore, rethink the connections with cultural diversity in Taiwan.

ICOM UK