President of Paris National Museum of Natural History visits Chicago to meet with the main museums and zoo
The President and the Director of the Paris National Museum of Natural History (NMNH) met with the main museums, botanical garden, zoo and aquarium of Chicago in October. Their objectives were to find ideas to attract new audiences with their American counterparts, and to build new partnerships in research and through travelling exhibitions.
The Museum is responsible for the conservation of collections of 68 million specimens, including hundreds of thousands of plants and 3.500 living animals. The NMNH receives 8 million visitors a year in its 12 sites, which include marine stations, an arboretum, a zoo, botanical gardens, a prehistoric excavation site and various laboratories.
The NMNH and 11 other leading natural history museums form a group (G12) focused on managing their invaluable specimen collections. The G12 represents 40 % of the world’s biological collections and as many as 500 million specimens between the institutions (six in North America and six in Europe).
Their project « One World Collection » aims to manage specimens more efficiently, more intelligently and more cooperatively.
The Parisian delegation met with the main museums, zoo and aquarium of Chicago.
The goal of the mission was to increase museum attendance by American tourists and to establish and strengthen partnerships with Chicago institutions.
Among topics discussed was the importance of the social role of museums. The way to build stronger bridges between youth and science through outreach activities, especially for young and disadvantaged audiences was also discussed.
A reception in the honor of Bruno David and Pierre Dubreuil at the Consul General’s Residence
The Consul General and the Office for Science and Technology in Chicago organized a reception in honor of the President and Director of the NMNH at the Consul’s Residence. Museum administrators, city officials, scholars and researchers from major universities in Chicago, representatives of American civil society and entrepreneurs were present.
The MNMH delegation started its visit in Chicago, and continued in St Louis and New York. The meetings strengthened the partnerships,in particular with the Field Museum as well as the botanical garden of St Louis. It was also an opportunity to discuss potential partnerships through research programs and the exchange of temporary exhibitions.
Finally, the President of the MNMH reiterated his desire to work more closely with the diplomatic network and thus participate in the promotion of French cultural and scientific excellence.