The challenges and needs of museums in safeguarding underwater cultural heritage

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Underwater cultural heritage is an old subject, yet there are still many challenges for museums in conducting best practices for dealing with collections from underwater. Museums in the United States (US) face difficulties due to conflicts between national policies and the ethics recommended by United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the International Council of Museums. To raise awareness of this critical issue in the US museum community, this research reviews the impacts of the related national policies, as well as the 2001 UNESCO Convention on the Protection of the Underwater Cultural Heritage, identifies the hardships for the museums, and recommends the role of service organizations to provide future direction.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)429-444
Number of pages16
JournalMuseum Management and Curatorship
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 20 2014


  • Abandoned Shipwreck Act
  • collections conservation
  • cultural resource management
  • marine archaeology
  • museum ethics
  • underwater cultural heritage


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