The AUB Archaeological Museum is the third oldest museum in the Near East, after Cairo and Constantinople. In 1868, just two years after the founding of the Syrian Protestant College, the American Consul in Cyprus, General Cesnola, donated the first gift of Cypriot pottery. With this nucleus collection, the AUB Archaeological Museum was born.
In 2006, the AUB Museum underwent a complete renovation under the curatorship of Dr. Leila Badre. The museum provides a unique overview of the archaeology in the Near East from the Early Stone Age to the Islamic Period showcasing collections from Lebanon, Syria, Cyprus, Palestine, Egypt, Iraq, and Iran.
Since September 1, 2020, the new curator, Dr. Nadine Panayot jointly with the Society of the Friends of the Museum, has been organizing a full program of virtual activities: lectures, children’s programs, gallery talks.
Nadine Panayot is the Archaeological Museum Curator at the American University of Beirut (AUB) and an Associate Professor of Practice at the Department of History and Archeology.
She holds a Doctorate in Archaeology, Classical Mediterranean and Near Eastern Civilizations, from Paris 1 La Sorbonne.
Prior to her appointment at AUB, she was a faculty member at the University of Balamand (UOB) (1999-2020) and was appointed Director of the Research Department of Archaeology and Museology (2010-2020). She was also the founder and Chairperson of the Department of Museum Studies and Cultural Heritage Management (2013-2020) and the Curator of the Ethnographic museum at UOB since its inception, where she played a key role in its launching back in 2009.
She is a member of The International Council of Museums (ICOM) since 1992 and a member of the ExecutiveCommittee of ICOM–Lebanon (Since 2011). She is a former Member of the ExecutiveCommittee of ICOM–ARAB (2013-2019). She joined The International Council of Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) since its inception in Lebanon in 2016.
She participated in several archaeological excavations in the Near East since 1992 with the Mission teams of the American University of Beirut Archaeological Museum, Paris 1 La Sorbonne and the Lebanese University and has been the Principal Investigator for all the archaeological excavations of the University of Balamand.
Since 2010, she is directing a terrestrial and maritime archaeological and ethnographical survey and excavation project in the coastal town ofAnfeh - Lebanon, aiming at the conservation of tangible and intangible Cultural Heritage as a necessary tool for ecotourism and sustainable development. Her research focused on establishing the concept of Hima (protected area), with the Society of Protection of Nature Lebanon (SPNL) and the help of the Municipality of Anfeh and the local community. The idea of Hima embraces the union of natural and cultural heritage conservation with the preservation of human dignity, identity and wellbeing.
She has been appointed:
1) UNESCO Expert; in the framework of the project: Emergency Safeguarding of the Syrian Cultural Heritage, since 09/2014.
2) Advisor to the former Lebanese Minister of Culture [05/2010 - 09 /2010] as a member of the Executive Committee for the Management of Beirut Archaeological Excavations.
3) Advisor to the Lebanese Minister of Culture [07/2014 - 11/2014] as member of the Committee for re-writing the Lebanese Law of Antiquities.