International Museum Day 2021

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International Museum Day 2021



3 TO 18 MAY 2021

ICOM has been organizing the International Museum Day for over 40 years. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, museums and the cultural sector are among the most affected. Nevertheless, this crisis serves as a catalyst for crucial innovations, notably an increased focus on the creation of new forms of cultural experience and dissemination.

With this call, Wikimedia Switzerland, Austria, Germany, France and Italy want to give an impulse to support this initiative, despite the actual circumstances, where culture knows no borders and lives on virtually. Many museums have adapted their operations to support virtual formats, released high resolution images and information under a free license and organize virtual collection tours.

We thank all the volunteers and authors engaging in our projects and we hope you will continue to make a contribution to free cultural knowledge by adding and completing the free encyclopedia Wikipedia and the Wikimedia sister projects on topics related to the theme of International Museum Day 2021 "The Future of Museums: Recover and Reimagine".

The objective of International Museum Day (IMD) 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.”

In keeping with Museum Day and this year's focus, we invite you to help us in completing and improving the presence of museums on Wikipedia, Wikimedia Commons and Wikidata.

Thank you for participating!


An initiative by Wikimedia Switzerland, Germany, Austria, France and Italy

"The Future of Museums: Recover and Reimagine"

International Museum Day 2021 will focus on creating, imagine and sharing new practices and innovative solutions for cultural institutions

  • Museums have the potential to embrace and lead the change in this pivotal moment for our society. The time is now to rethink the museum's relationship with the communities they serve, to experiment with new and hybrid models of cultural fruition and to strongly reaffirm the essential value of museums for the construction of a just and sustainable future. Museums must advocate for the creative potential of culture as a driver for recovery and innovation in the post COVID era.

  • With the theme "The Future of Museums: Recover and Reimagine", International Museum Day 2021 invites museums, their professionals and communities to create, imagine and share new practices of (co-)creation of value, new business models for cultural institutions and innovative solutions for the social, economic and environmental challenges of the present.

  • As representative of the global museum community, the vision of ICOM is a world where the importance of natural and cultural heritage is universally valued. Today, more than ever, museums face unique challenges related to social, economic, and ecological issues. While serving as witness of the past and guardians of humanity's treasures for future generations, museums play a key role in development through education and democratisation.

Consult the geographic museums map for linked Wikimedia content

The following geographic map locates the Museums in Switzerland, Austria, Germany, France and Italy based on Wikidata records. If you want to know which museums already have a Wikipedia article and which do not, as well as the respective quality of the article, you can find out by using the link to the interactive map below. Have fun exploring!

If you are a Wikidata expert, participate in our Wikidata contest and help us improve and inject meta data into Wikidata to complete the geographical visualization on museums in Switzerland, Austria, Germany, France and Italy.

Wikidata Competition

Museums Map

How to read the interactive map:
  • Black symbols: no Wikipedia article
  • Red symbols: one Wikipedia article
  • Orange symbols: at least two Wikipedia articles
  • Green symbols: four Wikipedia articles

How to participate & contribute

Wikidata Contest
From May 3 to 18, 2021, we are running a Wikidata contest related to museum metadata. Please follow this link to find all contest-related information, including how to register and participate, as well as details about the prizes. Every contribution counts to complete the geographical visualization on museums in Switzerland, Austria, Germany, France and Italy linked to Wikimedia content.

Wikipedia Articles
As a beginner or intermediate Wikipedia author you can contribute for example by improving and completing an existing article, inserting appropriate images and image galleries, inserting links to art collections on museums webarchives and portals, updating info boxes or inserting Wikidata info boxes into Wikipedia articles. If you are an expert Wikipedia author you might engage in creating a completely new article. You can consult the geographic museums map and explore museums with no article, and write about a cultural institution or translate an existing article in a different language. Please remember, if you want your new article about a museum to be reflected on the museum map, you have to interlink it in the Wikidata record of the respective cultural institution.

We have set up an outreach dashboard for all other activities aside from the Wikidata contest. If you want to enroll and assign the articles or categories you are working on for IMD2021 please click here. The registration on the dashboard is optional.

Outreach Dashboard

Wikimedia Commons
If you like to work with media files, you might want to upload artwork, collections, artist portraits and museum-related images to Wikimedia Commons. In some countries, due to the actual situation, it might not be possible to visit a museum for taking photographs and in any case, they have to be compliant with the legal framework. Maybe you still have many images you have not had time to share and upload into Wikimedia Commons. Nevertheless, in recent years many cultural institutions have released images of their collections under a free license. The collections are accessible through their portal or webarchive but are not yet available in Wikimedia Commons or embedded in a Wikipedia article.

GLAM Projects
Thanks to all the voluntary community and work across the globe and countries, there are several GLAM projects either on a global, national or regional scale you can contribute to. In some of the projects, the support of GLAM institution employees can make culture and art more accessible for everybody. Find here a selection of GLAM projects you might be interested in:

  • Art collections at Europeana Link
  • UNESCO Digital Library – Open access material for research Link
  • Museums Online Switzerland Link
  • Images Archives ETH-Library Link
  • Online Collection Swiss National Museum Link
  • Images Archives Schweizerische Gesellschaft für Volkskunde Link
  • Portail Joconde, liste officielle des musées de France Link
  • Projet Wikidata Musées de France Link
  • Collections Paris Musées Link
  • Des collections en partage Musée de Bretagne Link
  • Sculptures de la villa romaine de Chiragan du musée Saint-Raymond-Toulouse(éléments Wikidata déjà existants, ensemble des images à uploader au bas de cette page) Link
  • Collections des musées de Normandie Link

Contact us!

If you would like to contribute to this Wikimedia project, you need support in the activities for International Museum Day, or you want to learn more about the association, contact the respective chapter directly or me in the role of Wikimedia IMD project manager.

Debora Lopomo
GLAM Program & Partnership Manager, Wikimedia Switzerland
(Galleries, Libraries, Archives and Museums)

Find the list of contact persons by Wikimedia chapter in the table below:

WM chapter For voluntary community For cultural institutions For communication and press
WMCH DE: ulrich.lantermann
FR: flor.mechain
IT: ilario.valdelli
WMAT verein(_AT_) raimund.liebert
WMDE kultur(_AT_) holger.plickert
WMFR info(_AT_) xavier.cailleau
WMIT info(_AT_) marta.arosio