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February 3, 2021

NetworkUPDATE: New call for applications to host the 27th ICOM General Conference in 2025

Deep crises of the kind provoked by Covid-19, change paradigms, invert perspectives and accelerate processes that were already underway. Cultural institutions had to cope with the sudden need to rethink the physical experience of culture, the viability of funding models and the role of culture in empowering the community.

For this reason, ICOM has entirely rethought the format and the application procedures of its flagship event, the triennial General Conference. The new conference format, which is therefore the subject of this extraordinary call for applications to host the 27th ICOM General Conference in 2025, aims to:

  1. Define a sustainable event, with particular concern for environmental, economic and social issues;
  2. Include a digital dimension to the traditional in-person event, organising a hybrid event, ensuring ICOM members equal opportunities to attend the event;
  3. Ensure to ICOM Members an inclusive event in which everyone can participate, virtually or in person, depending on the budget they can invest.

To achieve these objectives, the questionnaire and the manual in support of the application published on March 5th 2020, have been fully updated. The active ICOM National Committees wishing to submit their application for hosting the 27th ICOM General Conference in 2025 are required to submit the new questionnaire by email to the ICOM Secretariat at, before the extended submissions deadline of 30 April 2021 (00:00 Paris time: GMT+1).

The documentation is available in English, French and Spanish.

Download the new call

The 27th ICOM General Conference aims to be better adapted and more feasible in terms of budget, size of the in-person event, duration of the event, number of activities and which integrates a digital dimension to the in-person event which is capable of meeting participants’ expectations in 2025.

The new ICOM General Conference will differ from traditional conferences in three ways:

  1. reduction in length of the event;
  2. format of the event, the conference may take place in one of two different formats proposed by ICOM at the choice of the candidates:
    1. Option A – Hybrid format: organising a hybrid event, adding a digital component to the in person-event organised in the host country, with on-site and on-line participants;
    2. Option B – Digital format: organising a fully digital event, with exclusively remote attendees;
  3. Application modality: candidates may choose to submit their applications individually or jointly according to the following options:
    1. Option 1 – Individual applications: candidates may apply individually to organize the hybrid or the digital 27th ICOM General Conference
    2. Option 2 – Joint applications: two candidates can join forces and stand as a team to organize the 27th hybrid ICOM General Conference (one National Committee will be designated as the organizer of the in-person conference in its country and another National Committee as the organizer of the digital conference) or stand as a team to organize the 27th digital ICOM General Conference;

but the backbone of the event will remain the same, the new ICOM General Conference will consist of:

  1. an International Symposium, a scientific congress bringing together specialists and addressing the theme of the conference, taking place one year prior to the conference;
  2. a highly varied scientific and cultural programme, alongside with the statutory meetings and the elections of the ICOM Executive Board and the Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson of the Advisory Council;
  3. a Museum Fair and Expo Forum to present innovations and progress that have occurred in the field and profession of museums.


The ICOM Secretariat is available should you have any further questions or require further assistance. Please send your requests to Francesca Pollicini, ICOM Events Manager, at