We are excited to announce the first three of our five keynote speakers, each of whom will address key aspects of the conference theme.

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    Sharon Macdonald

    Sharon Macdonald is the founding Director of the Centre for Anthropological Research on Museums and Heritage (CARMAH) and Alexander von Humboldt Professor in Social Anthropology (with an emphasis on Museum and Heritage Studies) at the Institute of European Ethnology at the Humbolt University of Berlin. She is also a member of the Hermann von Helmholtz-Zentrum für Kulturtechnik. As well as directing CARMAH, she runs the multi-ethnographer research project Making Differences. Transforming Museums and Heritage in the 21st Century and is a Principal Investigator (PI) in the excellence cluster Matters of Activity. Image, Space, Material. She was also a PI of the Contentious Collections Work Package of the Horizon 2020 TRACES (Transmitting Contentious Cultural Heritage with the Arts) project (2016-2019); and directed the Profusion theme of the AHRC-funded Heritage Futures research programme (2015-2019), based at the University of York, UK, where in 2012 she was awarded an Anniversary Professorship in Cultural Anthropology within the Department of Sociology. Her recent authored and edited book publications include Memorylands: Heritage and Identity in Europe Today (Routledge, 2013), International Handbooks of Museum Studies (Wiley-Blackwell, 2015, edited with Helen Rees-Leahy) and Refugees Welcome? Difference and Diversity in a Changing Germany (Berghahn, 2019, edited with Jan-Jonathan Bock).

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    Karen Salt

    Karen Salt has over 26 years’ worth of experience working in and with communities, organisations, charities and governmental bodies, including running non-profits and engaging in community development work. Based at the University of Nottingham, she directs the Centre for Research in Race and Rights and leads the university’s Black Studies PhD programme—the first interdisciplinary programme of its kind in Europe. An expert on sovereignty, power, collective activism and systems of governance, she leads and collaborates on a number of research projects, including the AHRC-funded “Geographies of Black Protest” that formed part of the larger networks funded as part of the UN International Decade for People of African Descent. She is a member of the Arts & Humanities Research Council (AHRC) Advisory Board where she advises on the development and implementation of strategic approaches to funding which reflect the challenges and opportunities arising for arts and humanities research and those that engage with it. She is also Deputy Chair of the UKRI’s External Advisory Group for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion. She is a sought after national speaker and frequently works with arts and cultural organisations on transformational social justice and institutional change. Her monograph, The Unfinished Revolution: Haiti, Black Sovereignty and Power in the Nineteenth-Century Atlantic World is available from Liverpool University Press. She is also working on new projects, including, “Theorising Futures in an Age of Twilight” and States of Blackness: Debt, Nationhood and Power in Haiti, Liberia and Abyssinia.

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    Kavita Singh

    Kavita Singh is Professor and Dean in the School of Arts & Aesthetics at Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, India. Her work relates to issues of secularism and religiosity, problematic national identities, and the memorialization of difficult histories as they relate to museums in South Asia and beyond. An art historian by training, she has also published on aspects of Mughal and Rajput painting. Her books and edited volumes include No Touching, No Spitting, No Praying: The Museum in South Asia (Routledge, 2014, edited with Saloni Mathur), Nauras: The Many Arts of the Deccan (National Museum, 2015, with Preeti Bahadur Ramaswami), Museums, Heritage, Culture: Into the Conflict Zone (Reinwardt Academy, 2015), Museum Storage and Meaning: Tales from the Crypt (Routledge 2017, edited with Mirjam Brusius) and Scent Upon a Southern Breeze (Marg 2018). In 2018 Professor Singh was awarded the Infosys Science Foundation Prize for Humanities. She has curated exhibitions at the San Diego Museum of Art, the Devi Art Foundation, Jawaharlal Nehru University, and the National Museum of India.