International Institute for Conservation takes action for COP26

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Sunday, 31 October, 2021 to Friday, 12 November, 2021


Founded in 1950, the International Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works (IIC) is the oldest independent international organisation in its field.

As COP26 takes place in Glasgow, it has been keen to take a responsible role in the profession towards sustainable practice. In IIC's own work, this means a commitment to reaching zero net carbon by 2030, and spreading good practice through our events, conferences, publication News in Conservation and leading journal Studies in Conservation.

We have also brought together our membership bode to create a new website on Google Arts and Culture , a film about the work of conservators of heritage against a backdrop of climate change, in every corner of the planet for COP26, and 24 hour Edit-A-Thon to improve information on art conservation and climate action - and have committed to working more closely with colleagues in other conservation bodies.

Here's a picture of what conservators will be doing during COP26 - do watch the film when it's out, and follow us on social - especially Instagram, and Twitter, to see what we are doing.

The programme

Connecting knowledge : COP26 Edit-a-Thon (live and online)

We are organising a 24-hour global edit-a-thon, 10 - 11 November, of the world's largest encyclopedia - Wikipedia, focused on Cultural Heritage Conservation Sustainability and Climate Action themes.  Working in partnership with conservators, universities and training institutions around the planet,  we will be bringing together people from across the art and heritage conservation world, with each group taking up the baton to add new material in two-hour-long sprints.

Participants from Mexico to South Africa  will connect new and existing knowledge, demonstrating the power of collective intelligence and removing barriers to  knowledge by having a resource open to all. The edit-a-thon will be launched live from our stand at Glasgow. You will also be able to watch through our website and social media platforms, as we track the progress of the edit-a-thon around the world.

#IICEditsForClimate      #COP26       #TogetherForOurPlanet

COP26 Green Zone Exhibition

A Time for Action in Cultural Heritage Conservation - new Google Arts + Culture website

IIC is one of the leading stories on the new COP26 Google Arts and Culture website for the Green Zone,  providing a window into the dynamic world of climate action and the important role of conservators globally in responding to the crisis. 

The Google Arts and Culture website is showcasing stories from organisations and communities that will be present at COP26. 

Capturing Conservation on Film: The Climate Emergency

The work of conservators brings us into every possible setting - from remote archaeological sites in forests or deserts,  to museums and iconic buildings in towns and cities. This gives us a unique insight into how the climate emergency is affecting cultural heritage and the wider environment, whether that's through the destabilisation of whole sites, or collections affected by incursions by insects and temperature changes.

As the centrepiece of our stand in Glasgow, we plan to bring together a film of conservation work across the world that addresses the climate emergency. It will be stitched together from one to three-minute films from conservators working in multiple environments across the world: a visually arresting picture of settings from stately homes to remote regions.

Watch the film online from 11 November.

Joint Commitment for Climate Action


We have also made a Joint Commitment for Climate Action with two other heritage bodies, ICOM-CC and ICCROM - read more about what this means in practice for us, our members and colleagues here.