Program Pillars

While witnessing fast-responding and impactful new roles for museums in our societies, We Are Museums 2019 aims to align museums as places for inclusive growth and sustainable development where social and environmental impact is the primary metric.

Museums are transformation tools and significant civic resources to influence the vital, healthy, social, societal, educational, environmental and entrepreneurial issues of today. Museums have the power to act on each of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals.


As a first step towards this transformation, and the main idea for this year’s edition, we believe in the necessity of local social connections to foster museums as central actors and propel sustainable and benevolent communities. To put some “Local Love” in the relationship with your visitors is to create a deep bond with them which will help you stay relevant. How museums can be actors of the solidarity economy? Where to start to give a social purpose to your institution? 

In our own words, we called it “MuseumHood” (neologism inspired by the neighbourhood and brotherhood): it is when a museum incarnates in the district, it becomes an urban element and a social hub, a museum deeply rooted in its territoriality, permeable to its neighbours’ needs and acting as service providers.

“I like the new word MuseumHood. It makes me also think of Robin Hood, social responsibility of museums.” Marthe de Vet, Head of Interpretation and Education, Van Gogh Museum (The Netherlands)

Museum For Good

“I believe that museums can assist, along with their communities, in creating a more conscious, caring and compassionate future for themselves by engaging in contemporary issues and aspirations.” Dr Robert R. Janes, Founder and Co-Chair, Coalition of Museums for Climate Justice (Canada)

Like everyone else, museums follow the rules of the Anthropocene but if we want to see a future of museums, we should start today changing our role and impact on tomorrow by considering the future of the people and the planet as our priority. Raising awareness is the huge first step that every museum should take. Becoming a Green Museum is the second step. Following simple rules and changing habits in its daily base have an impact on climate change (the Coalition of Museums for Climate Justice published some online). We believe in the collaborative potential of museums to act together and have an impact.

Museum Entrepreneurship

We often hear stiffness of museums stays the biggest doors to push when you work with or for museums. And this is true! Being able to apply the mindset and methodology from the entrepreneurial culture to museums is the key. Agility, flexibility, hands-on management, a culture of failure and success, interconnectivity between individuals and departments, etc. To understand this culture and how to adapt it to museums is the next step.