The MCS group consists of five staff members, all of whom have a strong link to the Museums and Collections programme of the Faculty of Humanities and the Heritage and Museum programme of the Faculty of Archaeology.
Pieter ter Keurs, leader of the research programme
Pieter ter Keurs is professor of Museums, Collections and Society. He is also academic director of the LDE Centre for Global Heritage and Development. Ter Keurs is specialised in critical museum studies en material culture studies.
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Martin Berger is an assistant professor at the Faculty of Archaeology. His research interests include (etnographic) museums and collections histories, indigenous forms of representation, and the impact of globalization on indigenous cultures. He has explored these interests with specific attention to Mesoamerica and Surinam.
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Evelien Campfens is a cultural heritage law specialist and post-doc fellow at the Research Group ‘Museums Collections and Society’. After having worked as a lawyer at the Dutch Restitutions Committee for Nazi looted art (2001-2016) she joined Leiden University (Grotius Centre for International Legal Studies) in relation to her PhD research on the topic of looted art. She is research coordinator of the Heritage Under Threat group of the LDE Centre for Global Heritage and Development.
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Laurie Kalb Cosmo has been a member of the art history faculty of Temple University Rome for twelve years before joining the University of Leiden Research Group in Museums, Collections and Society, and previously taught at Tufts University and University of California, Los Angeles. She has been a curator and administrator at museums in the United States, including Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Craft and Folk Art Museum Los Angeles and Peabody Essex Museum, and a Research Associate at Peabody Museum at Harvard University. The recipient of a Fulbright grant in Malaysia and Smithsonian Institution dissertation fellowship, Laurie has been a board member of the ICOM international committee on Museums of Ethnography (ICME) and earned her PhD and MA from the University of Pennsylvania and BA from Vassar College.
Holly O’Farrell comes from a PhD at the University of Limerick, Ireland. The focus of her research as a PhD candidate has been to look at nineteenth and early twentieth century exhibitions of Middle Eastern culture and question how social constructs intersect and influence the production of and reaction to such displays. The work questions how constructs such as gender, race and class can be mechanisms for implying, creating or maintaining hierarchies and stereotypes about the Middle East in Western minds and the use of exhibitions in supporting the imperialist project.