Transnational Island Museologies Conference: Call for Papers

23 November 2023

The International Council of Museums (ICOM)'s international committee on museology – ICOFOM, the School of Art History and the European Research Council (ERC) selected and UK Research & Innovation (UKRI) funded Shared Island Stories research project, are pleased to announce a hybrid (in-person and online) conference on the overarching topic of Transnational Island Museologies, to be held from 5-7 June 2024. The conference will also host the 47th ICOFOM Annual Assembly on Friday, 7 June 2024.

You can download the Call for Papers via the Shared Island Stories website -

While islands are conventionally associated with romantic ideas of local distinctiveness and isolation, many small islands share the growing problems of coastal erosion through rising sea levels and storm intensification, as well as economic recession, depopulation and inappropriate tourism development. This conference takes its cue from the theme of the research project Shared Island Stories between Scotland and the Caribbean: Past, present, future to unearth hidden stories and entangled spaces in emerging transnational island museologies. 

Shared Island Stories is a five-year research project selected by the European Research Council (ERC) and funded by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI). It is coordinated by the School of Art History at the University of St Andrews and aims to investigate relationships between the archipelagos of Scotland and the Caribbean. Drawing on history, heritage studies, sustainable development, art history and memory studies, the project asks: Which collections from the islands tell unfinished stories of Empire? What is the role of heritage communities in sustainable development? How can island community museums partner with NGOs, policy and local organisations and businesses for climate action? How can health and well-being be understood in relation to community heritage, traditional ecological knowledge and island life? What does this new knowledge bring to debates on climate justice, especially as they relate to the role of youth? 

The Transnational Island Museologies conference seeks to reflect on the role of museum practice and theory with regard to some of the most pressing ecological issues of our times by sharing knowledge from around the globe on the realities that affect remote, island and coastal communities. 

We invite proposals for papers on the two sub-topics of: 

(1) Indigenous and traditional knowledge, environment, and intergenerational transmission 

(2) Hidden stories, entangled spaces: thinking through trans-national coastal and island museologies

Deadline: 1 January 2024 via the online form -

Language: Proposals are welcomed in one of the three languages of ICOM (English, French and Spanish).

More information: Further details will be available via ICOFOM and the Shared Island Stories website -

The selection panel is comprised of representatives from the International Committee for Museology (ICOFOM), the University of St Andrews and the ERC-selected & UKRI-funded Shared Island Stories research project. 

If you have any questions or require further information, please contact the organising committee via