ICME 2024 Annual Conference

Museums and Change 2024 – Convergence of Voices: A Global Dialogue on Stewardship, Custodianship, and Service

09-12 September, 2024

National Museum of Anthropology – Mexico City, México

National Museum of Anthropology Mexico City, MéxicoCall for Papers:  English (PDF)Español (PDF)Français (PDF) | Arabic (PDF)
Registration:   English | Español
Submissions & Deadlines
Accommodation info


The Annual Conference of the International Committee for Museums and Collections of Ethnography (ICME) has welcomed through the years museum professionals from around the globe, to discuss and exchange the ideas, values and aspirations that surround ethnographic museums, their communities, and territories. Each year, the conference is organized in a different country, for which a partnership is established with a local museum or cultural institution that serves as a host. ICOM’s national, international committees and regional alliances are also invited to play a crucial role, providing this event with a local/international impact, and shaping the themes according to the most urgent needs of our sector.

Museums and Change 2023: Transforming our Institutions for the Future, took place at the National Museum of Ethnography in Budapest (Hungary), exploring how museums have sought to respond to the rapid transformations posed by the migratory and health crises, demands for cultural integration, political instability, and climate change. This year, with an inclusive approach and following our desire to promote diversity in all our components, the 2024 edition of our conference will be held at the National Museum of Anthropology in Mexico City, whose development for six decades and rich collections of Mesoamerican peoples turn it into one of the largest ethnographic museums in the world, and one of the most relevant institutions for the preservation of the American continent pre-Hispanic and contemporary history.

National Museum of Anthropology Mexico City, México

Museums and Change – Convergence of Voices: A Global Dialogue on Stewardship, Custodianship, and Service

With that spirit of inclusion and global diversity, our committee is seeking to reflect the multiplicity of voices and regions of our members, with a new edition of Museums and Change. Building on the theme of our 2023 conference in Budapest, ICME proposes to continue the exploration of the historic adoption of our new museum definition and the urgent work brought forth in the latest ICOM Strategic Plan (2022-2025), whose center of attention are the changes that museums are facing, and the transformations needed to support its network in the future. Focusing on the Plan’s core principles and commitments of stewardship, custodianship, and service to heritage, our 2024 conference committee asks museum professionals and academics to share their best practices, research, projects and even aspirations for the future regarding what these three core principles mean for both the staff and constituents of our cultural institutions, with a particular focus on regional and community museums through the lens of diversity, inclusion, and decolonization.

Museums and Change 2024 will take place at the National Museum of Anthropology, located in México City, one of the most ethnically diverse countries in Latin America. The conference will place a special emphasis on this cultural and geographical area, where regional and community-based museums that have been created, owned, and managed by Indigenous groups, local organizations and the civil society dominate the cultural landscape, responding to the needs to defend identities and people’s existence.

On the one hand, small and medium scale museums across Latin America have found a way through collaborative practices, to strengthen communities’ identity, and capacity for self-determination, based on intangible heritage and ancestral values. On the other, national museums are increasingly revisiting their representation strategies and homogenizing narratives, while other big scale and academic institutions are hiring diverse staff from Indigenous and minority communities, partially because of the general social demand to prioritize the voice of those who have experienced history firsthand, as well as the inclusion and diversity in their admissions. The Anthropology program at the National Museum in Rio de Janeiro which trains Indigenous curators is but one example.
However, still, for many Indigenous and other minority museum professionals, changes related to diversity and inclusion that impact stewardship and custodianship within their institutions falls far short of their expectations.

  • How are we working to decolonize our institutions and their practices in practical terms, and who is doing the work? Have they been successful?
  • How are our visitors, source communities, and various constituents involved in these discussions and processes?
  • What are you, and what is your institution, doing to undertake this work and social service?

The mere concept and practice of decolonization, which radically shapes museum management, differs in its definition and context geographically, and therefore requires a nuanced form of praxis from museum to museum, region to region, formerly colonized or colonizer. Thus, the conference will critically approach the plurality of new voices that have transformed the ways stewardship, custodianship and service is delivered in museums, continuing a unique regional dialogue that has taken place in Latin America over the past 50 years around representation, inclusion, and decolonization and that we wish to explore, compare, and contrast to other regions of the world. Understanding that the production of museological knowledge is built based on experimentation and research, we will pay special attention to practices and methodologies that challenge and implement stewardship, custodianship, and service in the museum context.

Call for Papers, Posters, and Workshops

Prospective presenters across the world are encouraged to help shape the conference and contribute through papers, posters, and workshops, sharing creatively their theoretical, experimental, empirical, and conceptual work. We particularly welcome proposals that focus on ethnography, anthropology, social history, and world culture museums, however, colleagues coming from or working in projects related to museums of every kind are cordially invited to contribute.
Proposal for papers (15 minutes), posters or workshops should not exceed 300 words.

By reflecting on our institutional histories of stewardship, custodianship, and service to heritage, which evolved in the distinct regional and cultural contexts that they have, Museums and Change 2024 aims to discuss and create new paradigms and organizational practices that generate the equity we are all striving to achieve. We invite participants to look at our past to move forward. Let us gather to debate these seminal issues in our field, for only through the inclusion and acceptance of a plurality of voices and experiences can we advance in our shared practice to effect the change we wish to see.

Submission and Deadlines

The following information should be included with the abstract proposal:

  • Title of submitted proposal
  • Indicate if it is a paper, panel session or workshop
  • Name(s) of Author(s) or presenters
  • Affiliation(s) & full address(es)
  • ICOM membership number (membership is not required)
  • ICME Member yes/no (membership is not required)
  • Technical requirements for the proposed presentation in Spanish or English
  • 100-word biography for each presenter

The abstract must be submitted in Spanish or English. Presentations will be delivered in English or Spanish.

Abstract deadline is April 15, 2024. Please email your abstracts to icom.icme@gmail.com.

1. Papers:

  • Each paper presentation has a specified time limit of 15 minutes; adhere to it, including Q&A.
  • Prepare presentations in PowerPoint or PDF, ensuring compatibility.
  • Provide audio/visual elements in a compatible format; specify equipment or software needs.
  • Submit the final presentation version by August 19, 2024 for program integration.
  • Include your name, affiliation, and credentials for context.
  • Deliver presentations in Spanish or English; notify if translation services are needed.
  • Familiarize yourself with session details and be ready for discussions and Q&A.
  • For technical issues during presentations, contact technical support at [to be announced soon].

2. Posters:

In which ways has the new definition fostered change in national cultural policies and further legal frameworks?

  • Design your poster in a clear, concise, and visually engaging format. Ensure it is well-organized and readable from a distance.
  • Limit your poster dimensions to 33.1 inches by 46.8 inches (or 841mm x 1189mm).
  • Clearly present key objectives, methodology, results, and conclusions. Utilize visuals, graphs, and concise text for effective communication.
  • Pay attention to font size, color contrast, and image resolution. Ensure all elements are legible, and the design is aesthetically pleasing.
  • Be available at your poster during designated sessions for discussions and questions from attendees.
  • Submit a digital version of your poster by August 19, 2024.
  • Include your name, affiliation, and contact details on the poster for attendees who may wish to follow up with questions or collaborations.

3. Workshops:

  • Workshop has a specific duration of 45 minutes; plan activities for optimal use of time.
  • Design interactive sessions with activities to engage participants through discussions and hands-on exercises.
  • Provide a detailed list of materials or resources if needed; inform participants in advance of any requirements.
  • Specify audiovisual or technical needs for a smooth workshop presentation; communicate equipment/setup requirements.
  • Submit a comprehensive workshop outline with key topics, learning objectives, and activity breakdown for participant understanding.
  • Confirm maximum participant capacity and communicate any prerequisites or recommended background knowledge.
  • Be available before and after the workshop to address questions and offer additional insights.
  • Submit pre-workshop materials/resources by [insert deadline] for advanced participant information.
  • Include your name, affiliation, and contact details for participants seeking follow-up discussions or questions.

Conference registration

ICME 2024 Conference Registration will be available March 15th. Conference rates are available below:

ICME Conference 2024 Rates (in Euros)

Registration TypeRegular Inscription (February - June)Late Inscription (July - September)
ICOM member (USA, Europe, Asia and Oceanía)250270
ICOM member (Latin America, the Caribbean and Africa)150170
General participant (Not an ICOM member)300350
Daily pass: individual pass for ICOM members and non-members90110
Pre-Conference Workshop
National Museum of Anthropology (September 9, 2024)
Mexico City Post-Conference Tour (September 13-15, 2024)information to comeinformation to come
Oaxaca Post-Conference Tour (September 13-15, 2024)information to comeinformation to come

Registration form (English)
Registration form (Español)

Accommodation info

Near the conference venue, there are some accommodation facilities where you can book your stay:

Use code: CIMAMC
Or email: ventas@parquemexico.mx

Use code: CIMAMC
Or email: ventas@parquemexico.mx

National Museum of Anthropology Mexico City, México