“Our commitment must be to remember the victims who perished, respect the survivors still with us, and reaffirm humanity's common aspiration for mutual understanding and justice.”
-- Declaration of the Stockholm International Forum on the Holocaust
Researchers are often faced with the challenge that historical sources are dispersed throughout various archives, collections, museums and memorials. Complementary data and information are grouped and catalogued following the logic of the individual institutions, and not necessarily with other institutions' collections or with potential users and researchers in mind.
At the IHRA Plenary Meetings, which took place in Bern from 27 - 30 November 2017, the founders of the Network War Collections – Netwerk Oorlongsbronnen from the Netherlands were invited to talk to IHRA delegates about how they are seeking to address this challenge by bringing archival material together in one digital space, creating a basic thesaurus and providing context - an initiative relevant to IHRA's goal to ensure access to documents bearing on the Holocaust.
Call for Papers for Conference: Urban Jewish Heritage - Presence and Absence to be held from 3-7 September 2018 in Krakow, Poland as part of the European Year of Cultural Heritage.
Over the centuries, cities across Europe and around the world have been impacted by their Jewish communities; as places of both presence and absence. The touristic presentation of Jewish heritage in many cities belies long and diffi cult histories but nevertheless recognition through the protection, conservation and interpretation of this heritage is of increasing importance.
On 28 November 2017, within the framework of the IHRA Plenary meeting in Bern, the IHRA Committee on the Genocide of the Roma hosted a discussion with eight organizations representing Roma in Switzerland. Participants included representatives of the following organizations: Verein Romano Dialog, Rroma Foundation, Roma Visionen Konkret Association, Association of the Swiss Sinti and Roma, Roma Jam Session Art Kollektiv, and Association J.M.S (Jenische, Manouche, Sinti).
The discussion during the meeting focused on education about the Holocaust and genocide of the Roma, and the relationship between this history and topics such as racism, and stereotypes against Roma in the media and in the public arena.
"It is a little known fact that in Switzerland more than 50 mainly smaller monuments recall the Shoah. While large memorials deal with the history of the Second World War and the Shoah in neighboring countries, Switzerland hosts mostly discreet signs of memory, telling small stories."
From 27 - 30 November, 2017, the biannual IHRA Plenary Meeting held in Switzerland convened delegations from 31 Member Countries and provided a unique opportunity to learn about and discuss projects and challenges within the field of Holocaust education, remembrance, and research.
On 30 November, 2017, the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance successfully concluded its second bi-annual Plenary Meeting under the Swiss Chairmanship in Bern with the consensus adoption of an organizational strategy prioritizing countering distortion and safeguarding the historical record, including sites, testimony and archival materials.
On 26 November 2017, the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) successfully concluded a conference in Bern, Switzerland, on the murder of people with disabilities and the Holocaust together with the Paedagogische Hochschule Bern and the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs of Switzerland.
On 23 November 2017 Co-Heads of the Austrian Delegation to the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance, Hannah Lessing and Michael Baier, and Chair of the IHRA Committee on the Genocide of the Roma, Martina Maschke, introduced the IHRA to participants at the 16th seminar of the teacher training institution "erinnern.at" in Krems/Lower Austria. The focus of the seminar was criminal law enforcement in Nazi Germany, war crimes and the prevention of human rights violation against detainees.
A new permanent exhibition has been opened on the site of a former concentration camp in Ladelund, North Friesland, near the Danish border. Between 1 November and 16 December 1944, 300 people died in Ladelund of the consequences of harsh conditions and forced labour. On Saturday 18 November 2017 a new permanent exhibition was opened, outlining the stories of those interned and killed on the site.