Museums have no borders,
they have a network
The term sustainability also applies to the health of museums themselves in order to be able to carry out their core missions and position themselves as vital societal agents. As representative of the global museum community, the vision of the International Council of Museums (ICOM) is a world where the importance of natural and cultural heritage is universally valued. ICOM strives to ensure that sustainability –through all its forms: social, economic and environmental- is included in its mission and values, as well as in specific activities.
In 2015, both the Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Agreement were adopted. Even with these measures, the world’s population is currently consuming the equivalent of 1.6 planets a year – a state of affairs that cannot continue. The nature of this global challenge requires a collective response across all sectors and scales. In this context, and to contribute constructively to the discussions on Sustainability, ICOM has established a Working Group on Sustainability (WGS) in September 2018. Their mission is to help ICOM consider how to mainstream sustainability, both within ICOM and for its individual and institutional members. They are also examining the role of a possible International Committee on Sustainability.
WGS Press Release
Plenary Video ICOM Kyoto 2019 

President’s statement
On September 7, 2019 the 34th General Assembly of ICOM held in Kyoto, Japan, adopted the following two resolutions on sustainability :
You can find the full text of the Resolutions below:
34th General Assemby Resolutions
In December 2018, ICOM and OECD joined forces to launch Culture and Local Development: Maximising the Impact – Guide for Local Governments, Communities and Museums, introduced in Venice by ICOM’s Director General Peter Keller and OECD’s Secretary General Angel Gurria.
This joint instrument aims at supporting and inspiring local government representatives, museums and civil society organisations to find innovative ways and jointly define a local development agenda that promotes a more sustainable future.
After further improvements to the content, ICOM and the OECD have completed the final version of the Guide and it was presented at the ICOM-OECD panel session on Local Development and Museums during ICOM’s 25th General Conference in Kyoto.
Download the Guide (English version)
Please download the flyer for more information and to discover how you can contribute to this initiative: Hyperlink to the flyer.

Launched in October 2016, “EU-LAC-MUSEUMS: Museums and Community: Concepts, Experiences, and Sustainability in Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean” is a research project aiming at providing a better understanding of the cultural, scientific and social dimension of the relationship between the EU and LAC, approached from the perspective of community museology.
To address this challenge, EU-LAC-MUSEUMS assembles a team of leading academics, museum professionals and policy makers working in Scotland, Portugal, Spain, France, Peru, Chile, Costa Rica and the West Indies, coordinated by the University of St Andrews in Scotland. The project, which runs until 2020, was conceived under the auspices of ICOM and funded by the EU Horizon 2020 programme under the Call INT12 (2015) “The cultural, scientific and social dimension of EU-LAC relations.”
“Societal challenges can lead to opportunities if approached in the right way. Europe is currently undergoing a crisis of identity, seeking to define its past, present, and future position in relation to the wider world, and to consolidate regional cohesion across generations within a wider, global knowledge economy. EU-LAC-MUSEUMS, ICOM Europe and ICOM LAC are committed to the idea that fostering inter-cultural dialogue and creativity through their regional and community museums is fundamental to this process.” (Dr Karen Brown, EU-LAC-MUSEUMS Project Coordinator).

Sustainability is a transversal topic which imbues many activities developed by the ICOM network, while National and International Committees have led actions which are specifically dedicated to sustainable development.
In 2018, ICOM-ASPAC’s annual meeting was on the theme of ‘Cultural Heritage for a Sustainable Future—Natural Disasters and Museums’ while ICOM Georgia, in partnership with ICOM Europe, organised an International Forum and Regional Workshop on ‘Museums for the Sustainable Development of the Society’. ICOM Switzerland centred its annual conference, co-organised with the Swiss Museums Association in Lausanne, around the theme of ‘Sustainable Development’, and devoted issue no. 13 of its journal,, to the same topic.
As another example, among other activities, ICOM-NATHIST has created the “Working Groupon the Anthropocene” in 2018 and has developed “Platform 2022”, a partnership between NATHIST, The World Association of Zoos and Aquariums and Botanic Gardens International. Created in response to the Rio+20 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, the initiative encourages the world’s governments to use the sound science provided by collecting institutions when making decisions around sustainable development.

We were excited to discover what you thought of #museums of today and tomorrow 🌿

Check out what we have found out!👐

Sep 16
#ICOMVoices 📣out now
"The ‘emotional turn’ in museum practice" by Marzia Varutti

🔭All museums engender #emotions: what is represented in an exhibition may influence what visitors will know, think, remember and do – as a consequence of how they felt while experiencing it.

#Museums have aimed to affect visitors since the emergence of 16th century cabinets of curiosity and their wondrous contents. In the 19th century, the Great Exhibitions – large fairs displaying the cultural and industrial achievements of nations – amazed visitors with the scale, ingenuity and exoticism of their displays; these emotional reactions served as a basis for museums to instil, envision, and materialise ideologies of nationalism, imperialism and modernity. Contemporary museums continue to leverage the establishment of emotional connections with visitors through carefully curated exhibitions.

In this article, Marzia Varutti presents 3️⃣ complementary perspectives on how emotions are transforming museum practice, by provoking the rethinking of exhibition design, institutional re-assessment, and new ideas and approaches engendered by research.

🔆Link in bio
Sep 15
⏳Deadline: September 16, 2022
Don't miss your chance to apply for #ICOM_Training🤩🌍

📖In November 2022 museum professionals from Nigeria will have the opportunity to participate in a training programme to develop a holistic understanding of the functions of a museum and identify and recognise the need to promote participatory and interdisciplinary projects.

The objective of this training is to offer museum professionals different strategies and tools that contemporary Nigerian museums can use to protect and communicate their country’s heritage in a participatory manner.

📍This programme will take place in Lagos, Nigeria, from 21 to 25 November 2022, and a series of grants will be offered to 25-30 participants.

⏰Link in bio
Sep 14
We are pleased to announce the publication of the new Dictionary of Museology (French edition), jointly published by Armand Colin (Dunod) and ICOM, and edited by François Mairesse.

The Dictionary of Museology is the product of several years of research and contributions by an international team of experts and authors. More than 1,200 entries, arranged into seven themes, analyse and contextualise terms used in the museum field, from the most academic (exhibition, artefact, intangible heritage, cabinet of curiosity) to the most contemporary (NFT, memory spots, cybermuseum…).

We hope that the Dictionary of Museology will allow its readers to use a common language, accessible to museum professionals of all disciplines and cultures.

🏛️link in bio

Sep 7
ICOM is offering a Special Grants round in response to the war in #Ukraine and its impacts on neighbouring countries. Open to countries which are supporting, or wanting to support, Ukrainian #museums and #museumprofessionals.

🕒Deadline: 14 Oct

🗓️Join our dedicated Q&A Session on 20 Septembre 2022, 14:00- 15:00 (CET)

How to apply, Q&A Registration form (EN, FR, ES) 👉link in bio

Sep 5
📣The 17th volume of the International Journal of Intangible Heritage has been published online🤳

This volume explores themes such as folklore and mythology🕵️‍♀️, festivals and rituals📜, museology, craft, and aspects of the Convention for the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage, through diverse contributions from 🇧🇪Belgium, 🇰🇭Cambodia, 🇨🇳China, 🇮🇳India, 🇰🇷Korea, 🇵🇪Peru, 🇵🇭the Philippines, 🇿🇦South Africa, 🇪🇸Spain and 🇹🇷Turkey among others.

📚link in bio
Sep 1
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🇳🇿Tūhura Otago Museum @OtagoMuseum will return six Warumungu objects to their traditional owners in the Northern Territory more than a century after they were first taken I @1NewsNZ 🔗
🇩🇪Berlin #museum approaches ethnological collection in new ways @humboldtforum I @washingtonpost 💬
King Charles plans to turn the Queen’s beloved Balmoral into a #museum I @MailOnline 🔗
Museums should ensure that the information they present in displays and exhibitions is well-founded, accurate and gives appropriate consideration to represented groups or beliefs.

#ICOMCodeofEthics 📘
⏰ Reminder to join our Q&A SESSION on ICOM Special Grants Support to #Museums and Museum Professionals in/from #Ukraine

🗓️20 septembre 2022, 14:00- 15:00 (CET)

Register 👉
🎨Un nouveau #musée impressionniste voit le jour dans l’ancienne demeure de #Monet à Argenteuil, près de Paris I @GEOfr ⌨️
🇪🇺Europe’s 10 coolest neighbourhoods for #heritage lovers I @HeritageTribune 🔎

“The Value of Digital Conversations in 2020” by Bernadine Bröcker Wieder. How can informal conversations with other museums and external stakeholders help in deciding what to do with future exhibition programmes?
Interaction with the constituent community and promotion of their heritage is an integral part of the educational role of the museum.

#ICOMCodeofEthics 📘
🇺🇿Uzbekistan’s looted museums and forged artifacts: as new Uzbekistan aims to attract more tourists, local #museums are finally receiving long-due attention, including in regard to #stolen artifacts I @Diplomat_APAC 🖱️


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