The St. Petersburg International Center for Preservation and its founding partner, the GCI, held Security Seminar II in St. Petersburg on July 7-10, 1997. The seminar was jointly chaired by Wilbur Faulk, director of security for the J. Paul Getty Trust; Oleg Boev, director of security for the Hermitage Museum; and Gunther Dembski, security director and curator at the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna and chairman of the ICOM Security Committee.
Participants included security and administrative staff from the Hermitage Museum, the Russian State Museum, the Library of the Russian Academy of Sciences, the Russian National Library, Pushkin House, the Russian State Historical Archives, the State Museum of the History of St. Petersburg, the Pulkovo Astronomical Observatory, the St. Petersburg Archival Administration, and the Russian Orthodox church. Special guests attended from the governor's office, customs, Interpol-Moscow, FBI-Moscow, and the Art Loss Register.
Security has become a flagship issue for the Center's programs, in response to the growing need to protect collections and buildings throughout the former Soviet Union. The seminar, the second in a series, initiated a dialogue among cultural and law enforcement officials at the local, national, and international levels. The seminar addressed physical security, theft detection, investigative techniques, collaborative recovery procedures, and guidelines for theft response. Participants will continue follow-up activities with customs and law enforcement officials to strengthen the overall approach to security throughout the region.