ICOM Canada continues to contribute to and represent the Canadian interests in the ICOM Museum Definition review. As part of the ongoing international consultation process, ICOM Canada is presenting a list of key words and concepts to ICOM Define. Please submit any substantive commentary below by Friday, March 19.
ICOM Canada undertook a member consultation about this definition prior to the 2019 ICOM General Conference in Kyoto. The definition, plus key words and concepts presented below will be submitted to ICOM Define in April 2021.
ICOM definition (2007):
A museum is a non-profit, permanent institution in the service of society and its development, open to the public, which acquires, conserves, researches, communicates and exhibits the tangible and intangible heritage of humanity and its environment for the purposes of education, study and enjoyment.
ICOM-Canada proposed definition (2019):
A museum is a non-profit, permanent, dynamic and responsive institution in the service of a living planet. It is a public place that welcomes all people, fosters cooperation, cross-cultural exchange and public understanding of human and environmental interdependence.
The museum acquires, conserves, researches, communicates and exhibits arts and cultures, the tangible and intangible heritage of humanity and its environment for the purposes of education, study, enjoyment and the promotion of social and environmental justice.
Key Words and Concepts
1. The Museum’s essential characteristics:
- Non-profit organization
- Public place
- Arts and Culture
2. The main Museum functions/ mission:
- Welcomes all people
3. The “new” Museum functions/mission:
- Dynamic and responsive
- Fosters cooperation, cross-cultural exchange and public understanding
- Promotes social and environmental justice
4. The Museum’s contents:
- Tangible Heritage
- Intangible Heritage
Thank you to everyone who submitted comments. This consultation process is now closed.