Collaboration between IAC and MAFBI in the field of Archaeology

Lahore (Muhammad Yasir) A Delegation from Institute for Art and Culture (IAC) is currently visiting France to cement collaboration between the IAC and French Educational and Technical Institutions. The IAC Delegation, headed by Vice Chancellor, Prof. Sajida Haider Vandal, met with Dr. David Sarmiento Castillo, Dep. Director MAFBI, the French Archaeological Mission in the Indus Basin in Nanterre, France. The MAFBI presents itself as a Research and Development program, in the form of an Archaeological mission of the Indus Basin, one of the two longest running international cooperation programs in Archaeology for Pakistan. The MAFBI includes in its program, a fieldwork training schema, at the service of Scholars and Young professionals of Archaeology and Heritage sectors. The objective of this meeting was to discuss the use of Archaeology as a means for community development; advocate for a multidisciplinary approach to Archaeology and Heritage Preservation, use a holistic approach when preserving heritage, and break barriers among professionals with skills but scattered through different institutions. In a new achievement for IAC, it was decided by both parties that they will establish an MoU that frames a long-term cooperation between the two institutions. The main objective of the MoU is to design and create a program of undergraduate studies in Archaeology. This program shall include a training schema for technical and logistical skills in the field of Archaeological fieldwork school, In-field curation, conservation, restoration, Emergency Archaeological response (i.e. Urban Archaeology), Management and communication in Heritage Preservation, Advocacy against Heritage/Antiquities trafficking and other related practical skills and competences. It was decided that the development of this cooperation and program, particularly through its training schema should be oriented towards local involvement and community development. It will involve Pakistani as well as French experts. The research perspectives which are inherent to the scientific program shall irradiate to other areas of Heritage Preservation. Heritage Preservation as a tool for development shall produce knowledge which will be applicable to improve the development of local communities for e.g. water harvesting in the Cholistan Desert. The delegation also had a meeting with JB Clais, the curator at Louvre Museum, Paris, and it was decided that a game design workshop will be conducted in collaboration with the Louvre at the IAC in November 2019.