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Summer School: Ethnographic Collections, Aspects of Research, Preservation and Conservation, 23-31 August 2017, University of Antwerp, Belgium

Publish Date: Apr 12, 2017

Deadline: Apr 30, 2017

Combine study and pleasure and spend a happy summer!

The Faculty of Design Sciences of the University of Antwerp, FARO, Etnocoll and the King Baudouin Foundation organise a second edition of this summer school. The intensive 8-day programme will focus on organic materials, particularly ethnographic artefacts, bringing together experts in a collaborative and interdisciplinary workshop week.


The summer school will take eight days, including an excursion day in the weekend. Each day experts and students will discuss a topic in the morning. In the afternoon the focus is on practice.

During four days, we will widen the field of research on ethnographic artifacts. Participants will learn about the most relevant non-destructive research techniques and how to put these techniques to use. They will also acquire the skills necessary for reading, understanding and researching marks, combination of materials, different layers of dirt, coating(s), paintings, corrosion, pest damages... Following the reading and understanding of the object, types of cleaning, gluing and consolidation will be presented, discussed and sometimes practiced.

Furthermore, the participants will research an ethnographic museum object. Central question: which information to gather and how to do it.

The Saturday excursion will already look at museum storages with ethnographic material and exhibitions with ethnographic displays. The following two days, we will look at and discuss storage environment and materials, as well making mounting materials and storage covers.

The last day participants give a personal presentation of their own object and the report they have written during the summer school, and a group presentation about their work in the museums.


The target groups of this summer school are:

  • Master students conservation studies
  • Professionals working in the field of conservation of ethnographic artefacts, with at least 2 years of experience
  • Interested parties withing the field, such as cultural anthropologists

ECTS credits

Successful completion of the summer school can be awarded with 3 credits according the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS). Credits can be awarded for participants who:

  • prepare for this summer school with a literature study (an orientation in the field of conservation of ethnographic objects) and a selective bibliography (given by University of Antwerp); and
  • are present during the full summer school; and
  • give a presentation on about the research and conservation of the artefact, and about their work in the museums. This presentation will be graded.

To include the credits in the curriculum at the home institution, participants need an agreement with the responsible person at the home institution.

A certificate will be awarded at the end of the programme.

Social programme

To keep the minds fresh and to maximise interaction, several fun and interesting social activities will be organised during evenings so participants can make the most of their stay in Antwerp.

Participants will not only have the opportunity to get to know their fellow class-mates and staff in a more informal way, but will also be able to get in touch with peers attending other summer schools at the Antwerp Summer University. A visit to the beautiful city hall, a guided city walk or a quiz nightare only some examples of these activities.

All activities of the social programme are offered free of charge, in some cases participants will be asked for a deposit which will be reimbursed upon participation to the activity. 

Application procedure in 4 steps

  1. Register in Mobility Online
  2. Fill in personal details and complete some extra questions
  3. Wait for approval of your application
  4. Pay the participation fee and upload some extra documents within 10 days after approval to secure your spot

Applications can be submitted by filling in the online registration form via Mobility Online. After having registered, you will automatically receive an email with further guidelines to complete your application.

Upon successful submission you will receive an automatic reply to confirm your application. Students will be notified about the results of selection in the first part of May. If your application is accepted you will receive an email with more practical information on payment and visa.  Note that your subscription is only valid when the participation fee is received by the summer school’s secretariat.

The application deadline is 30 April 2017.

Accepted students will be registered as regular students of the University of Antwerp and will hence receive a student account and a student card with which they will have access to the catering facilities and to the Wi-Fi network of the University of Antwerp. Furthermore, accepted students will be automatically insured under the policy of the University of Antwerp.  

Registration fee

Registration fee Students: €380
Professionals: €480
Fee info Includes: course materials, one group dinner, coffee breaks, transportation for excursions, social activities.
Does not include housing nor meals.
Application procedure Online through Mobility Online.
Candidates have to add:
  • a curriculum vitae and a motivation letter to their enrollment
  • a particular field of interest in (an) organic material(s) of ethnographic objects
Deadline The application deadline is 30 April 2017. Candidates will be notified about the results of selection at the end of May. 

Scholarships for University of Antwerp students

Two types of scholarships are available for students who are currently enrolled as regular students of the University of Antwerp. 

  1. Refund of € 150/student after attending a summer school organised at Antwerp Summer University. Students should prefinance the full registration fee and can claim a reimbursement of the allowance after submitting a certificate of attendance to the Antwerp Summer University Office.  
  2. Scholarship for a short international experience for students who qualify for financial aid by the Department of Social, Cultural and Studentaffairs (SCS) .

For more information please click "Further Official Information" below.

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