Assessing “the Revival of the Egyptian Museum Initiative” for the People with Special Needs as an Approach for Social Sustainability

Mostafa Khaled Mohamed, Amal Abdou, Doaa Abouelmagd

Disability is one of the greatest challenges faced by the societies. Recent statistics from the World Health Organization indicated that the percentage of people with special needs with different disability problems is around 13% globally and exceeds 10% at the local level.

Despite the many national laws and codes that seek to make people with special needs have corresponding life to that of others, there are still barriers to their involvement in the society adequately, especially their use of the social infrastructure, and public and cultural buildings like museums.

Museums are one of the most important establishments that must be suitable for the use of every person including people with special needs. They are catalysts for culture, history, art and science as well as their representation of the progress and renaissance of countries and societies.

The Egyptian Museum with its 19th century neoclassical style has been one of the most prominent landmarks of downtown Cairo for more than 100 years. It has the largest collection of works of ancient Egyptian history and art. Despite its status as one of the most important museums in the world, it has suffered a great deterioration over several decades, which reflected the building and the exhibits negatively. As a result, “The Revival of the Egyptian Museum Initiative” was launched in May 2012 to define the national and international future role of the museum. It aimed to study the current situation of the museum and develop a comprehensive plan for rehabilitation.

The paper discusses and assesses “The Revival of the Egyptian Museum Initiative” and its suitability for the people with special needs as an approach to achieve social sustainability. Moreover, the paper analyzes the appropriateness of the Egyptian Museum for the use of people with special needs and its comparison with a similar global example to come up with a set of recommendations to increase the efficiency of the Egyptian museum and it’s surrounding area.
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