2022-23 Consultations on the renewal of the Museum Policy
Open from October 2022 until May 2023
About the consultations
At the National Culture Summit on the Future of Arts, Culture and Heritage in Canada in May 2022, the Honourable Pablo Rodriguez, Minister of Canadian Heritage announced that Canadian Heritage would begin work on renewing the Canadian Museum Policy. The renewal will take into account the information received following a consultation exercise running from October 2022 to May 2023. The consultations target the general public, Indigenous partners, heritage sector stakeholders, advocacy organizations, provincial and territorial representatives, and federal institutions and organizations.
The next Museum Policy, for the period beyond 2023, will set out aspirations for the museums of the future and have an impact on how we protect our heritage and how Canadians will be able to access it. These aspirations will be supported through a range of funding programs, legislative measures and services.
Why are we consulting?
Canadians enjoy visiting museums. Almost seven in ten Canadians (69%) visited at least one heritage institution in 2019, prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. Heritage institutions, including museums, art galleries, historic sites, archives, botanical gardens and zoos, can be found in communities large and small across the country.
The Government of Canada last updated the Canadian Museum Policy in 1990. Since then, Canada’s society has changed, and new priorities have emerged. The 1990 Policy does not take into consideration these new priorities, such as reconciliation with Indigenous Peoples, addressing issues of equity, diversity and inclusion, or the ongoing digital transformation. The 1990 Policy also does not address the different needs of small, medium and large institutions and the different roles each may fulfil within their communities.
The purpose of these consultations is to gather views on issues of importance to Canadians, Indigenous partners and the heritage sector. Responses will help build a federal vision for the museum sector, which will be used to adapt or improve existing federal measures to ensure that our cultural heritage is protected, and that heritage institutions continue to be a place where Canadians can learn for generations to come.
Who should participate?
The Government of Canada is seeking input from all Canadians, whether in Canada or abroad, who have an interest in, or want to share their opinion on, museums in Canada.
Join in: How to participate
Heritage institutions, including museums, art galleries, archives, heritage sites, botanical gardens and zoos received an online survey in October 2022. This survey was emailed directly to institutions across Canada.
Virtual roundtable sessions
As part of the stakeholder consultations to be conducted by the Department of Canadian Heritage from October 2022 to April 2023, virtual dialogue sessions are anticipated. These sessions will discuss the following themes:
- role of museums in society;
- resilience and sustainability in the sector;
- reconciliation with Indigenous Peoples;
- equity, diversity and inclusion; and
- preservation and access, including the digital transformation.
More information about the themes can be found in the Discussion Guide. Dates for the virtual thematic dialogue sessions are coming soon.
Note: Participation in the virtual consultations is by invitation only. Dates are subject to change. However, you will find the questions that will be asked during these sessions in the discussion document.
Consultation with provincial and territorial governments
- Dialogue opportunities through the Federal-Provincial-Territorial Culture and Heritage table meetings took place in September and November 2022.
- Follow-up discussions to be confirmed.
- Relevant provincial and territorial departmental officials.
Public consultations are open to all Canadians from January-February 2023
Share your ideas online
Canadians will have an opportunity to complete an online survey, to be launched in January 2023. A link to the survey will be made available on this webpage.
Participate by mail or email
Indigenous Engagement and Consultations
Canadian Heritage will seek the views of First Nations, Inuit and Métis communities and organizations through an engagement process. Indigenous museums, cultural centres, knowledge keepers and experts will be invited to participate in virtual discussions on the same themes as in the virtual roundtables, although particular attention will be paid to issues related to reconciliation within the context of the Museum Policy. National Indigenous Organizations will also be invited to share their views.
Letters will also be sent to modern treaty holders and those with self-government agreements to seek their views on the renewal of the Museum Policy Engagement sessions are planned for March and April 2023. Dates and locations will be announced in February 2023.
Engagement sessions are planned for March and April 2023. Dates and locations will be announced in February 2023.
25 Eddy Street, 9th floor
Gatineau, Quebec K1A 0M5
- 1-866-811-0055 (toll-free)
Agents are available to answer your questions Monday to Friday, 8:30 am to 5 pm (ET).
- Renewal of the Canadian Museum Policy – Discussion Guide
- 1990 Museum Policy
- Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage, Arts Culture, Heritage and Sport Sector Recovery from the Impact of the COVID-19, 2022
- Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage, Report on the State of Museums in Canada, 2018
- Government of Canada Survey of Heritage Institutions, 2019
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