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Report on the joint meeting of the
IMA-Commission on Museums
and SMMP-Europe
Munich, Germany - October
25, 2013


This year's show marked the Golden Jubilee of the Munich Show and the "Special Exhibition" or "Sonderausstellung" had some wonderful material on display from both museums and private collections across the globe. All the attendees of the meeting were given a VIP Pass which as well as giving free access to the show also gave entry to a special Bavarian Spiegel tent where everyone was well looked after and entertained.

This year also saw us in a new venue which was appreciated by all the delegates. We are hopeful that this will be our meeting room in years to come.

Meeting Report

After a short word of welcome from the IMA-CM Secretary and European Coordinator of SMMP, Mr Peter Davidson, it was down to business. As is normal at our meetings the SMMP business was dealt with first after which the IMA-CM agenda was followed.


1.     All members were reminded that they should check the SMMP website to see if they are due to pay any subscriptions. Members were encouraged to use the online payment facility (using PayPal) where possible but that the Co-ordinator would be happy to take cash (€10 or $10) and this would be handed over the Anna Domitrovic at the Tucson Show in February.

2.     The SMMP website was still taking articles on "Best Practice in Museums" from members. Members were particularly asked to consider articles on de-accessioning registered museums specimens and the sort of procedures that they are required to follow.

3.     Members were also reminded that a grant of up to $1000 was still available from SMMP to undertake research and study that address one or more of the mission goals of the SMMP which include: a) to foster recognition of mineral science collections as an essential, educational and cultural resource, b) to promote support for the growth, maintenance and use of collections and exhibitions and c) to advance museum practice through co-operation in the development, review and dissemination of information. All applications are welcome and will be assessed by the Board of Directors of SMMP.

4.     The SMMP exhibition case at the 2014 Tucson Mineral Show will have the title, "Minerals called or used as Diamonds".

5.     Following on from her blog entry on the Opening of the MIM Museum in Beirut (see, Eloise Gaillou of the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County was invited to give a short informal report of her visit.


1.     The Secretary announced to the meeting that following a recent election, Dr Federico Pezzotta of the Natural History Museum, Milan was duly elected as Chairman of the IMA-CM, the runner-up was Dr Alan Hart of the Natural History Museum, London was invited to become the Vice-chairman. This was accepted. Federico than gave a short speech in which he thanked the national representatives for this unexpected honour and in which he also hoped to put into place new ideas and initiatives and to engage more closely with the representatives to bring new life to the Commission. He was drawing up plans or the coming years and hoped to have these firmed-up in the new year. He also gave warm thanks to Lydie Touret, the former Chairwoman for all her years of hard work and dedicated service.

2.     The secretary moved onto the subject of National Representatives. Under the constitution of the IMA, each of the affiliated national mineralogical societies are entitled to nominate one representatives to serve on the commissions of the IMA. The list that I have available was very out-of-date and many of the names on the list were no longer representatives for many reasons. I was endeavouring to contact each member association to try and find out who the national representatives are and to update my list. One of the problems is that when a representative steps down, the Commission secretary is often not informed of this change. In time I hope to send round a letter to all associations to ask them to keep the Commission and the IMA up-to-date on any changes. Giancarlo Parodi informed the meeting that he would now be the official French representative and this was duly noted.

3.     The host for the next Mineralogy and Museums will be taken at the IMA Conference which is held in Johannesburg from 1st - 5th September 2014. There is currently one firm bid on the table but another is expected and as soon as possible, National Representatives will be informed and a vote can be taken.

4.     At the IMA 2014 Conference, a session has been organised which will deal with Minerals and Museums under the general theme Minerals, Museums, Culture and History. The closing date for the submission of abstracts is February 28th 2014. Instructions for the submission can be found at

5.     The Secretary informed the meeting that he had now been granted access to the IMA-CM website and any notifications and changes can be made through him. The Secretary expressed his thanks to Tony Kampf for looking after the website for all these years.

6.     The IMA-CM still has responsibility for the Catalogue of Type Mineral Specimens (CTMS) which can be accessed through the website. The feeling of the meeting was that the IMA-CM should retain control of this and a way will be sought to assure that the CTMS is continuously updated and that any new data on existing type specimens can be added when available.

7.     The Chairman expressed his desire to see new national curator groups established along the lines of those run by Germany and Italy. The Chairman felt that this would help to establish a stronger curatorial community in the member states and help to keep each other and other national groups through the IMA-CM informed. The Secretary would be interested to know of others. The meeting also expressed a desire to bring private museums and collections into much closer contact with the IMA-CM.

8.     A strong interest was expressed by some delegates in setting up an official SMMP/IMA display case at the Munich Show as happens at Tucson and Denver (and possibly other shows). The Secretary agreed to contact the Show administration to see if this was possible and at what cost. With 2014 designated at the UNESCO Year of Crystallography there may be a ready-made theme already available. There are a number of exhibitions planned to commemorate this special year. The University of Vienna, the University of Padua

9.     As soon as possible the officials of the Commission will publish a list of possible new projects. The Commission is keen to see as many potential projects, large and small, as possible. It may not be possible to run all the projects, but we would be delighted to hear of all your new ideas.

10.  The Secretary agreed to compile a report of this meeting and to issue it to all delegates as soon as possible.

The meeting closed at 5:00 pm. The secretary gave his thanks to all those who attended and invited SMMP members and IMA representatives to meet again at the 2014 Munich Show in October 2014.

Submitted by
Peter Davidson
European Coordinator SMMP
Secretary IMA-CM

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