Over the past twenty years, museums across the UK have worked hard to ensure their collections are inclusive, relevant, and welcoming for all audiences with initiatives such as Kids in Museums and the brilliant advocacy work of the Museums Association and their Museums Change Lives campaign celebrating the vital role these institutions play.
But what about the people running the museums? The 2020 Inc Arts Hold On report revealed that only 2.7% of the museums, galleries and libraries workforce are from Black and Minority Ethnic communities. We want to know why that is and what can be done to change it.
Chaired by Catherine Ritman Smith, CCSkills Trustee and Head of Learning and Engagement at Young V&A, Changing History: Diversifying the museum workforce was a free online panel discussion that brought together young, diverse voices from across the sector to share their career journeys and experiences of working in museums and heritage.
During the event, the panelists shared insight, perspectives and ideas around barriers to entry, the need for diverse leadership opportunities, alternative entry routes, shifting internal structures, representation of cultural heritage and much more.
With an online audience made up of professionals from the sector and a significant number of young people and career changers considering a career in this area, the event was a moment of connection that explored some of the challenges that are everybody’s to tackle and celebrated the success of our exceptional panelists.