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Session Dates

19.00 – 21.00 hrs CET, Thursday February 17th 2022
19.00 – 21.00 hrs CET, Thursday February 24th 2022
19.00 – 21.00 hrs CET, Wednesday March 2nd 2022


Zoom links will be sent out to all registered participants two days before each session. 

Course Description

This 6-hour, low participant-to-instructor ratio, eCourse will explore practical and innovative approaches to protecting against common and uncommon threats in museums, libraries, and cultural institutions. Topics addressed include theft, vandalism, natural disasters, fire, environmental hazards, and violent acts.

Museum thefts or illicit trafficking of cultural heritage occur more often than all of us think.  The recent thefts in 2020 of iconic paintings by the world’s greatest artists remind us just how important risk management is to the the security of museum collections and affiliated institutions.  Likewise, newspapers recount headline-making tales of horrific smash and grab museum burglaries that rarely, only rarely, have happily ever after endings where the paintings come home undamaged, if they come home at all. 


During the course participants will:

➣ Receive an introduction to museum risk management.
➣ Explore the necessity of museum threat management.
➣ Discuss innovated new approaches and explorethe benefits of proactive museum security.

Participants working in the security sector who take this course will come away with the ability to make more knowledgeable decisions on how to reduce their institution’s risks. Participants who are not already working in security, will get an understanding that museum security is not just a tool or a person but a way to protect cultural heritage.  It should be an intrinsic part of the organisation of every cultural heritage institution.


Course Instructor:

Security expert Dick Drent, has been a professor with ARCA’s PG Cert Program for more than a decade, teaching about the proactive ways of protecting cultural heritage. With 30 years of law enforcement experience in the Netherlands and abroad, he’s spent his law enforcement career fighting organised crime and terrorism, mostly within the Undercover and Sensitive Operation Unit before becoming the security director at the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam. Over the last ten years he has worked to change the traditional methods of reactive museum security into a more dynamic proactive security which focuses on preventing incidents before they happen. He was also pinpointed chief investigator assigned to the trace and recovery of two priceless Van Gogh paintings stolen from the museum in 2002, artworks which were recovered in 2016 in a property owned by Raffaele Imperiale, an Italian drug lord and a clan leader of the Neapolitan Camorra.

What we will explore


How to effectively assess threats in their operational environments.


Ways to analyse museum environments in order to proactively prevent, deter, and respond to threats before they occur.


How to develop effective countermeasures to potential threats.


How predictive security intelligence can help you proactively prepare for and defend against tomorrow’s threats today.


How to recognise threats by the observance of human behaviour in predictive profiling, (and by the way this is referring to tactical analysis of behaviour and has nothing to do with racial and ethnic profiling).

How People Are Reacting

I took this online course as an introduction to the topic when the COVID pandemic prevented me from attending ARCA’s PG Cert program in Italy. The course gave me an exciting baseline introduction and I look forward to taking their summer professional training program next year.

Sarah Scott

As a university student taking courses in organized crime and terrorism, I wanted to understand better how art intersects with these more well known types of criminal behaviors. Professor Tijhuis and Professor Albertson gave me an excellent overview and I look forward to seeing what other courses on the subject ARCA develops.

Luis Rodriguez