Message from the ICOFOM Board

Dear ICOFOM members,

In a time of great challenges and uncertainties for museums in the different parts of the world affected by the outbreak of COVID-19, the International Committee for Museology (ICOFOM) expresses its deep concern with the impact the current pandemic is having on the global museum field. In the past several months, we have been closely watching the situation of museums in the various countries where public and private institutions have been obliged to close their doors while still trying to maintain their basic functions of preservation, research and communication within the context of a pandemic.

Facing a possible economic recession and political instability, museums have been challenged to reinvent themselves in digital platforms and on social media. In the meantime, we have witnessed massive layoffs, immediate cuts in salaries and the interruption of ongoing projects. All these have had more severe impacts on museums’ most vulnerable personnel. In this pandemic scenario, we, the members of the ICOFOM Board, would like to express our solidarity with museum workers everywhere and share our hope that institutions may find ways to preserve the lives of those involved in safeguarding of our cultural heritage, thus proving their commitment to basic human right to equality and to social justice.

We believe that museology is a discipline that serves society to deal with losses by enabling us to make sense of the present while reflecting on the past. Working for the development of museology as a tool for various societies to exchange knowledge on the museum experience, ICOFOM intends to keep its main activities during this period of contention and recovery by organizing webinars and open-access digital publications on the most urgent topics.

We are also interested in learning how your museum, university or research centre is dealing with this pandemic at this time and what new methods you are considering for the future. If you have any actions, experiences and events which reflect on the current pandemic that you would like to share with the museological community, please, send us an e-mail at

Thank you and stay safe!

The ICOFOM Board (2019-2022)