News & events > Launch of International Museum Day 2017
14 Dec 2016

Launch of International Museum Day 2017

international-museum-day-2017 The International Council of Museums (ICOM) has recently announced that the central topic of International Museum Day 2017 will be "Museums and contested histories: Saying the unspeakable in museums". The International Museum Day will be held on 18 May. This theme focuses on the role of museums that, by working to benefit society, become hubs for promoting peaceful relationships between people. It also highlights how the acceptance of a contested history is the first step in envisioning a shared future under the banner of reconciliation.

According to ICOM, by choosing to say the unspeakable in museums, the theme of the International Museum Day 2017 looks at how to understand the incomprehensible aspects of the contested histories inherent to the human race. It also encourages museums to play an active role in peacefully addressing traumatic histories through mediation and multiple points of view.

Every year since 1977, ICOM has organised International Museum Day, which represents a unique moment for the international museum community. On this day, participating museums plan creative events and activities related to the International Museum Day theme, engage with their public and highlight the importance of the role of museums as institutions that serve society and its development.

The objective of International Museum Day is to raise awareness of the fact that, “Museums are an important means of cultural exchange, enrichment of cultures and development of mutual understanding, cooperation and peace among peoples.” Organised on and around 18 May each year, the events and activities planned to celebrate International Museum Day can last a day, a weekend or a whole week.

ICOM is inviting cultural institutions of all types around the world to join in this celebration, which will focus on the link allowing for a vision of the future above and beyond taboo subjects and towards a better understanding of one another. The website of the International Museum Day 2017 provides a set of tips to prepare activities.

For additional information about International Museum Day 2017, please visit