Resources > Network of European Museum Associations (NEMO)
22 May 2011

Network of European Museum Associations (NEMO)

The Network of European Museum Organisations (NEMO) was founded in 1992 as an independent network of national museum organisations representing the museum community of the member states of the Council of Europe. Together, NEMO's members speak for over 30.000 museums across Europe.

NEMO connects European museums and their organisations to help to ensure their place in the cultural development of Europe.
NEMO fosters European policies that help museums in fulfilling their role as keepers of cultural heritage by promoting their importance to European policy makers.
NEMO supports European museums in their aim to learn from each other by networking and co-operation and shows them ways to participate in the existing European cultural policies in its function as an information channel between European institutions and museums.
NEMO believes that museums are key players in safeguarding cultural heritage and they are central figures on the way for a better understanding within Europe.

NEMO focuses on four strategic areas that are important for the museum sector in the present and in the future:

TOPICS:

Museums have a long tradition of sharing the cultural heritage in their custody with other museums and institutions. To lend objects to other museums is considered one of their most important tasks. Through the mobility of collections people can become acquainted with, appreciate, enjoy and understand their own and other cultures, thus enabling them to pass on this heritage to future generations. In this context, NEMO has developed European guidelines to increase the mobility of collections through the development of a standardised loan agreement that can be used by all kinds of museums in Europe.

Museums have been educational places since their inception, with their mission encompassing two sometimes, competing remits: caring for collections as well as providing access and learning opportunities for visitors. In addition to being places that conserve and present the traces of the past, they may also now be seen as the centre piece of community development or regeneration projects.

Lifelong learning therefore opens up a new era for museums: that of questioning assumptions, of experimenting, of building up partnerships, and of being challenged by encounters with different publics, new audiences, new citizens, and of trying to make a positive difference to their lives.

Museums are often at the heart of successful urban regeneration initiatives. They help regions to assert their identities, bring back investment and consumers and enhance the quality of life in urban areas. They can help revive and diversify the local economy and the competitiveness of their environment.

With the remarkable variety of cultural heritage across Europe, the onset of globalisation offers significant opportunities for economic growth. A large part of that heritage is represented in the collections of European museums, which draw tourists from across Europe and around the world. The huge influx of tourists that museums attract is one of their most important contributions to local economies, and is becoming a growing industry in Europe at large.

In recent years there has been a growing demand for reliable data about the digitisation of, access to, and the preservation of museum collections in the cultural heritage institutions of Europe. Through digitisation and new media devices, museums can engage with a wider and more diverse audience on various levels and play an increasingly interactive and educational role within society.

Museums can change people's lives. They contribute to cohesive communities and reflect the history and identity of all citizens. In turn, museums live and develop by the skills and the creativity of their public and they must show their value to society. One of the major tasks of museums is the development of their audiences, be it the reaching out for new groups under-represented in museums or the creative engagement with visitors in and outside the museum.

There is a vast range of funding possibilities available for museums on different levels, which embrace the core tasks of museums as well as initiatives tailored to work on specific topics, from international to regional levels. NEMO collects museum-relevant, cross-sectorial, international and European funding possibilities. Is also serves as a platform for co-operation between museums for new projects.

EU policy on cultural cooperation began between member states in 1992 with its inclusion in the Maastricht Treaty. The EU culture policy addresses and promotes the cultural dimension of European integration through legislation and funding. This concerns the development of cultural activity, education or research in the fields of cinema and audiovisual, publishing, music and crafts. Many other EU policies do have a link and impact on the culture policy. NEMO publishes the links and relevant initiatives on the European level for museums and their staff.

Museum management is a very broad theme that takes into account all aspects concerned with the management of a museum. This includes curation, collection management, public education, exhibitions, and technology, to name a few. This page will act as a collection point for, and exchange of, best practices examples for museum, as well as museum organisation management - allowing a transfer of knowledge between museums and museum organisations of all different shapes and sizes.

Audience development allows museums to better reach current and potential visitors by more effectively meeting their needs and expectations and by developing stronger on-going relationships with the audience. In recent years the museum sector has taken great strides in opening up and making accessible its collections to different public groups, including, those with special needs, non-visitors, migrants, families, and older people. Museums have done this in order to allow these groups to benefit from museums' potential and to offer tailored projects to tackle their needs.

Within this area, however, there are still knowledge gaps between different countries within Europe and between museums with different scopes. This page should help to facilitate knowledge transfer and best-practices for museums and museum professionals - so that ultimately the public can benefit in the best way possible from museum resources.

Here in the Reading Corner you can find publications and other documents relevant to the museum sector, which are grouped by category.