On November 17, 2021, the Japanese Association of Museums (JAM) officially celebrated the winner of the JAM Award 2021: Varve Museum (or Nenkou Museum) during the opening ceremony of the 69th JAM’s annual meeting.
The JAM award was established in 2020 to commemorate JAM’s 90th anniversary. The selection committee, nominated by the JAM’s Board, selects museums basically from among JAM members that have made outstanding contributions and demonstrated exemplary service to the Japanese and international museum community.
The Varve Museum exhibits the unique varves excavated from the bottom of Lake Suigetsu in Fukui Prefecture. Varves refer to the sediment with characteristic annually laminated sediment piled up in the lake bed. The total length of the varves is approximately 45 meters long, which indicates that it required 70,000 years to formulate the said varves since the dimension of the thickness of yearly layer is around 0.7 millimeters on average. The data obtained from Lake Suigetsu varves is determined to be the world de facto standard of radiocarbon dating for geological science in the International Radiocarbon Conference held in UNESCO Headquarter in France on July 13, 2014.
As a winner of the JAM Award, the Varve Museum will have the opportunity to present at the Best in Heritage 2022 conference, held in partnership with the International Council of Museums (ICOM) and Europa Nostra. The conference will be held in the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Dubrovnik, Croatia.