2023 AAM Annual Meeting
May 19-22, 2023
Join thousands of museum professionals in Denver!
Be a part of #AAM2023 in Denver!
Social & Community
The value of museums to society transcends their traditional focus on collecting, preserving, and interpreting. At their best, museums are vital infrastructure, sustaining healthy, inclusive, and resilient communities by enriching education systems, bolstering economies, strengthening societal cohesion, improving peoples’ well-being, and beyond. It is this social & community impact—the changes in the lives of people—that truly exemplifies the power of museums and the people who work within them to change the world. How can more museums harness this power, building thriving, relevant institutions that people consider essential? Join thousands of museum professionals from around the world in Denver in 2023 to explore the many ways museums are integrally weaving themselves into their communities, creating a better world for all.
As William Gibson has famously observed, the future is already here, it is just unequally distributed. Colorado is already living pieces of our common future: on the forefront of climate change, demographic transformation, and Indigenous equity. In Denver, connect with museum people from around the globe and learn how museums are helping their communities address these issues and more through inspiring content in four unique, thematic tracks centered on museums’ social impact: people, planet, power, and possibility. In addition, participate in a full day of practical, hands-on workshops and sessions that will introduce you to key concepts, frameworks, and practices associated with identifying, measuring, and sharing your institution’s social impact from leaders within and beyond the museum field.
Come ready to explore, learn, and be transformed.
What Can I Expect at
Start your #AAM2023 experience by connecting with colleagues in person through interactive programming designed to expand your network. Share challenges, successes, and new ideas, and get inspiration for the sessions you will choose to attend later in the conference.
#AAM2023 Explore programming will be divided into four thematic tracks: People, Planet, Power, and Possibility, with each session will offer something for everyone. Featuring conversations among museum people, policymakers, business leaders, educators, and other visionaries from around the U.S. and the world, sessions will leave you inspired and challenged to amplify the impact you can have on your communities.
Deepen your practice through a full day of hands-on sessions, workshops, and trainings that will help you apply the principles and postures of social impact within your own context and community. Sessions will focus on the “how-to” and provide attendees with tangible tools and outcomes you can bring back home.
#AAM2023 EXPLORE programming will be divided into four thematic tracks: People, Planet, Power, and Possibility, and each session will offer something for everyone. Featuring conversations among museum people, policymakers, business leaders, educators, and other visionaries from around the U.S. and the world, sessions will leave you inspired and challenged to amplify the impact you can have on your communities.
From workforce culture and effective leadership to the mental health and wellness of frontline staff and community members, human beings are fundamentally at the heart of why museums matter to society. Join conversations about humanity and museums through sessions that address labor practices; DEAI; representation; education; mental health/wellbeing and trauma response; and human rights.
As the U.S. grapples with a long overdue racial reckoning, a global pandemic, mass shootings, and the widespread diffusion of misinformation, the need to leverage our influence and empower our communities has never been more urgent. Programming in the power track will examine topics including equity, civic learning and engagement, activism, advocacy, governance, issues of truth, trust, and accountability, and how museums might share and cede authority to their communities.
Learn how the climate crisis poses a threat to all museums’ communities, collections, staff, and missions, and explore environmentally sustainable practices for every type of museum. Investigate museums’ fundamental role in catalyzing a triple net effect for our planet’s health that encompasses economic, social, and environmental issues, within and beyond their walls. Session topics will include climate crisis; natural disasters; water; energy innovations; environmental justice; environmental disaster preparedness; carbon neutrality; food security; migration/immigration; globalization; and public health (including pandemics).
Come ready to engage on a host of topics through the lens of money, exploring the role government, corporations, philanthropic entities, and individuals have to play to advance the possibility of sustained prosperity for all museums and their local communities. Programming will cover topics such as new trends in philanthropy, revenue streams, and fundraising. Additional topics may include reparative finance/restorative economics; public-private partnerships; museums and institutional collaboration/resource sharing; NFTs/crypto and blockchain fundraising; business models; revenue streams; effective fundraising; digital; ethical investing; reducing funding barriers; and funder expectations.
Every community owes its existence to generations from around the world who contributed their hopes, dreams, and energy to making the history that led to this moment. Some were brought here against their will, some were drawn to leave their distant homes in hopes of better lives, and some have lived on this land for more generations than can be counted. Truth and acknowledgment are critical to building mutual respect and connection across all barriers of heritage and difference. We begin this effort to acknowledge what has been buried by honoring the truth.
We acknowledge the ancestral lands of the Piscataway people, the lands on which the American Alliance of Museums office is located. We encourage you to use this native lands map so you can learn what lands you occupy—visit: native-land.ca.
Please take a moment to consider the many legacies of violence, displacement, migration, and settlement that bring us together here today. We welcome all of you in the work of continued uncovering of truths in the museum field and beyond.
About the American Alliance
of Museums Annual Meeting &
The AAM Annual Meeting first started in 1906 in New York with under 200 museum professionals and has grown to over 5,000 attendees, becoming the largest museum conference in the United States.
The AAM Annual Meeting is the only event of its scope and scale. It brings together museums of all types and sizes—from art and history museums to zoos and botanic gardens—to share ideas and make connections that are transformational. It’s a place where all museum professionals learn from one another, create partnerships, and leave inspired to make an impact on their museums, communities, and the world.
Email: membership [at] aam-us.org