News & events > The Best in Heritage 2016: ASEMUS interviews Nguyễn Thị Bích Vân
22 Jul 2016

The Best in Heritage 2016: ASEMUS interviews Nguyễn Thị Bích Vân

The Best in Heritage 2016 Mrs. Nguyen Thi Bich Van As part of the preparations for the international "The Best in Heritage 2016" conference, where she will take part, ASEMUS recently spoke to Nguyễn Thị Bích Vân, the Director of the Vietnamese Women's Museum. In the interview she discusses recent developments at the Vietnamese Women's Museum, which has been recognised as the "Best attraction in Viet Nam" over two consecutive years, as well as her participation in The Best in Heritage and the relevance of ASEMUS, of which the Museum has been a member for several years.   You will be attending this year's The Best in Heritage conference upon being recognised as the "Best attraction in Viet Nam" in 2015. Could you tell us a bit more about this recognition, and what it means to the Vietnamese Women's Museum? The Vietnam Tourism Awards are the most prestigious awards of the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism to honor organisations, businesses and individuals having made a significant contribution to the development of tourism in Viet Nam. The award ceremony has been held since 1999 until the present day. 2015 was the first time the category of "Top Vietnam Attractions" was voted on in recognition of the best quality of service and the most interesting tourist site. The Vietnamese Women's Museum (VWM) is honoured to receive the award "Top Vietnam Attraction" for 2 consecutive years, in 2015 and 2016. This is a great honour for VWM: it is a motivation for us to keep renewing the content on display and improving visitor services. The significance of the award is not only the recognition of trust and enjoyment shared by visitors, tourism companies and agencies, the mass media and partners; but also an acknowledgement of our efforts in promoting the Museum through many different channels, enhancing the prestige and status of the Museum, and so attracting more visitors and partners.   What are the main projects for the Museum at present? As a gender museum run by the Women’s Union (VWU), the institution focuses on research, conservation, and display of the rich cultural heritage of Vietnamese women and the Viet Nam Women’s Union. It is also a centre for cultural exchange between Vietnamese and international women to promote equality, development and peace. This is an area where the VWM has achieved initial success. Moreover, the Vietnamese Government has been more committed to promoting gender equality and gender mainstreaming in policy advocacy and other areas of social life, so that the issue of women must be recognised under the gender perspective. Women’s issues cannot be resolved only by women but they should be placed in relation to the broader framework of the issues faced by the country. As a special communication channel of the VWU, the Museum should continue to research, collect and enrich information for exhibitions in order to contribute to raising public awareness about women's issues and gender equality, as well as promoting the participation of women in activities to reach gender equality. Currently the main projects of the Museum are:
  • Developing strategies to foster gender mainstreaming.
  • Carrying out research in order to diversify thematic exhibitions presenting issues of contemporary women and gender equality (for instance: the exhibition "Grandmother, Mother and Daughter - the transmission of values"; "Hair Fashion, Women and Initiatives")
  • Human resource training to equip staff for change management
  • Consultancy for the museum in the country to improve the prestige of the VWM.
  Have you ever attended "The Best in Heritage"? And what do you expect about this year's edition? This is the first time that the VWM has been invited to attend "The Best in Heritage". We wish to introduce ourselves to museum and heritage professionals, and the media as well. We would also like to learn and exchange with participants who have achieved success which have received national and international recognition.   Finally, could you let us know what ASEMUS means to you? ASEMUS is a cross-cultural network of museums from Asia and Europe which connects museum and heritage institutions in more than 50 countries. The VWM has taken part in this network from 2012 and found it an ideal forum to share, to connect, to learn and establish cooperation. We maintain a connection with ASEMUS by attending workshops, sharing information on our Museum’s activities - from permanent to thematic and temporary exhibitions and events. ASEMUS’ objectives, including to promote mutual understanding between the peoples of Asia and Europe through collaborative museum-based cultural activity, as well as to stimulate and facilitate the sharing and use of museum collections, are objectives that the VWM cherishes and follows. We appreciate the core values of ASEMUS and believe that these are universal values that museums worldwide, including the VWM, should pursue.   For additional information about the Vietnamese Women's Museum, please visit For additional information about The Best in Heritage 2016, please visit and For the second consecutive year, ASEMUS is the media partner of the event, and its members can obtain reduced registration fees.