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Interesting news for women’s museums: ICOM is preparing an issue of Museum International on the theme Museums and Gender.

This issue of Museum International aims to generate serious reflection on gender issues in museums, how they are intertwined, and the role of museums in a world prioritising gender equality. Issues of gender impact every layer of museum practice, from governance to visitation. This issue focuses on gender representation within museum management, operations and trusteeship, as well as in collections, exhibitions, education and public programmes.

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6th International IAWM Conference of Women’s Museums

Frauenmuseum Hittisau
(Women’s Museum Hittisau, www.frauenmuseum.at)
1st-4th July 2020


Frauenmuseum Hittisau, the only women’s museum in Austria, organizes in collaboration with IAWM the 6th International IAWM Conference of Women’s Museums.

All members, all women’s museums worldwide and all people who are interested in the work of the women’s museums are invited.


Preliminary program:

1st July

15:00    Get together, registration, visit of the women’s museum, coffee

17:00    Guided tour in the exhibition about birth culture (including the EU project of different women’s museums)

18:00    Official opening

20:00    Dinner and party


2nd July

09:00 – 16:30 Short presentations of the participating museums and initiatives (10 min. each)

16:30 Excursion


3rd July

09:00 – 11:00 Short presentations of the participating museums and initiatives

11:30 – 17:00 Plenary assembly (only for members)

17:30 Open Space

20:00 Dinner and networking


4th July

9:00 – 10:30 Presentation open space

11:00 – 13:00 Workshops on topics relevant to women’s museums (f.i. museology, travelling exhibitions, funding …)


(Minor modifications of the program are possible)


Please send registrations to info@iawm.international.


Download the conference invitation here in English, Spanish, French, German, or Italian.


From 11th to 14th June 2019 the International Seminar on Museum Governance of the women’s museums of Senegal and Quebec 2019 took place in the Women’s Museum Henriette Bathily in Dakar, Senegal. Here you can find the IAWM report on the conference.

Louise Senechal is currently doing an internship at the Musée de la Femme Marrakech and describes in the following report her personal view and feedback of the seminar in Senegal:

Louise Senechal, intern at the Women’s Museum Marrakesh.

Le séminaire international sur la gouvernance des musées a eu lieu à Dakar du 11 au 14 juin 2019. Rassemblant des professionnels de plusieurs pays (Sénégal, Québec, Cameroun, Burkina Faso, Italie et France), ce séminaire avait pour but de réfléchir à un renforcement des collaborations entre les musées du Sénégal et ceux du Québec et de réfléchir ensemble aux différents modes de gestion muséaux. Continue reading


On the occasion of 100 years of women’s suffrage and 70 years of gender equality in the German constitution Women’s Museum Bonn shows an exhibition about the fight for rights in the first and in the second women’s movement.

The exhibition explains the incredible obstacles the suffragettes had to overpower: bureaucratic hindrance, legal interdictions for women, prejudices – not only by politicians, but many social groups, and last but not least disagreement among the engaged women. At the beginning of the 20th century most women’s groups operated only reluctantly and avoided „propaganda actions“, whereas a small minority dared to demand their right in the public. The central strategy of women’s suffrage associations was to submit petitions. But all efforts were in vain. Without the revolution in November 1918 German women would not have obtained the suffrage in the same year. Continue reading


Photo Ros Kavanagh

‚Pop-up’ museum – 100 Years of Women in Politics and Public Life in Ireland

Ireland’s touring ‘pop-up’ Women’s Museum which has traveled all over the country, is believed to be the first of its kind in the world.

It chronicles the history of Ireland over one hundred years from the foundation of the State, and the role women played in politics and public life throughout that period.

Photo Ros Kavanagh

Photo Ros Kavanagh

The pop-up, a Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht initiative under the Irish Government’s Decade of Centenaries 2013-2023 programme, is touring a number of venues in the four provinces in the country before it returns to Dublin Castle in Spring 2020, to Dublin Castle where it opened on 14 December 2018 to mark the centenary of the 1918 General Election where women could first exercise their franchise and stand as candidates for election.The pop-up provides insight into the lives of some of the many hundreds of women, who helped shape Ireland from the 1920s to the present day,personal portraits are laid out with inter-actives as well as objects, clothing, rare manuscripts and furniture gathered from private collections. Some of these women became members of the Irish and/or European Parliament, two became President of Ireland but not all are so well known. Continue reading


Group photo of the seminar

From 11 to 14 June, the International Seminar on Museum Governance of Senegal and Quebec 2019 took place in Dakar. The goal of the meeting was to explore the possibilities of exchange and partnership in the museum sector of Quebec and Senegal and to present already existing best practices.

The initiative for the seminar came from the Women’s Museum Quebec, under the leadership of Lydie Olga Ntap, and the Senegalese Women’s Museum Henriette Bathily with Marie-Pierre Mbaye-Myrick and Awa Cheikh Deiouf.

Responsible for organizing the seminar in Dakar was Mr. Ibrahima Cissé, the Director of the Department of Culture and Tourism of Dakar.

Mr. Ibrahima Cissé, the Director of the Department of Culture and Tourism of Dakar, Photo: Uli Gutweniger

As IAWM, we are proud of the start of this seminar, because our network of women’s museums was the foundation for it. In 2000, the Women’s Museums of Senegal and Merano/Italy formed a partnership. This partnership was the origin of the idea to invite women’s museums from around the world to gather in a conference, which could be realized in 2008. Back then the network of women’s museums started. Continue reading


On 14th of June 2019 thousands of women and men in Switzerland went on strike in order to protest for women’s rights. The first women’s strike in Switzerland took place in 1991. Since then many things have changed – but many things also remained problematic, like equal pay, care work, and representation in places of power. The strike is called the “biggest political protest in the history of Switzerland”.

The strike was not only a landmark for women’s rights in Switzerland, but also one step closer to the foundation of a women’s museum in Switzerland. Finally! Continue reading


On 24th May 2019 Gül Aydin, student of museology and individual member of IAWM, was invited to the Women’s Museum Izmir in Turkey to deliver a talk with the title “Looking at the Museum From a Feminist Perspective”.

In her speech she started off talking about women’s movement and feminism and the importance of basing an idea on a theoretical ground. She emphasized the importance of feminism in creating equality in  museums. By giving examples of women’s museums in the world, she talked about questions like: Continue reading


Konubokastofan (The women’s book room) was founded by Rannveig Anna Jonsdottir and officially established as a non-profit entity on April 25 2013.

Anna conceived the idea for Konubokastofa while studying Icelandic literature at the University of Iceland. Helga Kress, a professor at the University, and Anna’s mentor, brought to her students’ attention the large amount of books, written by Icelandic women authors, that were out of print, obscure or difficult to obtain.

Many years later after post graduate studies in Denmark, ¨raising two daughters, and a lot of work collecting books, applying for grants and gathering interest from readers, writers and the community, Anna’s idea was brought to fruition. Continue reading


At the end of the First World War, Virginia Gildersleeve, Dean of Barnard College, Caroline Spurgeon, professor of the University of London and Rose Sidgwick of the University of Birmingham decided to create a world organization that united university women, in order to avoid another war, this was the origin of the International Federation of University Women (IFUW).

In 2015, IFUW changed its name to Graduate Women International (GWI) in order to attract a larger number of members. GWI fights for women’s rights, equality and empowerment through access to quality education, and training for the highest levels of leadership. GWI seeks that 100% of girls and women in the world have a higher education than elementary. Currently, GWI has national affiliated associations in 60 countries and individual associates in other 40 and is a consultative body of the UN.

After its re-foundation, the Mexican Federation of University Women (FEMU) joined IFUW in 1992, during the XXIV Triennial Conference of the IFUW in Palo Alto, California, although previously it had already been part of this Federation in 1927.

FEMU is proud to belong to this network of women who fight for a world of equality and peace where everyone has access to education and contributes to the integral development of peoples.

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