What do Canadians see as the value of museums for them, their communities, and for Canada?

Reconsidering Museums set out to answer the question, what do museums mean to Canadians? Through a rearticulation of the value of museums and a rebrand of the sector, this project created the tools and language necessary for museums to better connect with and serve their communities, to deepen their relationships and increase their relevance to the Canadian public.

The museum sector understands the importance of museums and museum work. This project used what we heard from dialogues with Canadians to empower museums with a shared language that expresses the value of museums in terms that resonate with the public, increase meaningful engagement, and create a more sustainable and relevant sector.

The resources developed through Reconsidering Museums provide adaptable values-based messaging that bridges the gap between museums and their publics. The resources affirm the value of museums with data-driven insights that help shape public dialogue around the vital role of museums in our society.

Who is involved?

Reconsidering Museums launched in 2020 as a national project undertaken by a consortium of provincial and territorial museums associations and the Canadian Museums Association, led by the Alberta Museums Association.

Six pilot sites helped develop the Reconsidering Museums toolkit by testing the resources to ensure they are adaptable, relevant, and meet the needs of museums with diverse governance structures, budgets, audiences, and mandates. The six pilot sites are Atlas Coal Mine National Historic Site, Blackfoot Crossing Historical Park, Fort McMurray Heritage Village and Shipyard, the Galt Museum and Archives, Millet and District Museum and Archives, and the Royal Alberta Museum. 

The Alberta Museums Association gratefully acknowledges the financial support of the Government of Canada through the Canada Cultural Investment Fund and the Province of Alberta through the Community Initiatives Program for the Reconsidering Museums project.

For more information on the origins of the Reconsidering Museums project, listen to “An Introduction to Reconsidering Museums”, the first episode of Why Museums Matter, a limited series podcast created as part of Reconsidering Museums.

Last modified: Thursday, 2 March 2023, 4:21 PM