Code of Ethics

ICOM Code of Ethics for museums

Ethics and museum professionals’ exemplary practices are essential for ICOM.

ICOM Code of Ethics for museums
was adopted in 1986 and revised in 2004. It establishes the values and principles shared by ICOM and the international museum community. It is a reference tool translated to 37 languages and it sets minimum standards of professional practice and performance for museums and their staff.

By joining ICOM, each member commits to respect this code.

ICOM Statutes

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ICOM's Statutes are an essential document for the organisation. ICOM's rules clarify and complete these Statutes.

The Statutes are the foundations of the organisation and its functioning. They specify the objectives, the mission and the organisation of the structure.

The new version of this essential document was adopted in 2007 during the 21st General Conference in Vienna (Austria).

Article 21 - 21. Operational Secretariat

Section 1. Role
The Operational Secretariat, consisting of the Director General and other staff members of ICOM, is the operational centre of ICOM. It evaluates and initiates programmes, handles membership files, records and manages finances, and protects and promotes the identity of the Organisation.


Section 2. Operations
The Director General is the Chief Executive Officer employed by ICOM and is responsible to the Executive Council for the efficient and effective management of ICOM, the resources required for ICOM’s functioning of the Organisation and the daily operations of the Secretariat, as well as for the promotion of the interests of ICOM and communications with its members, committees, task forces and working groups. In day-to-day matters, the Director General reports directly to the President of ICOM.