CAIRO – 18 May 2021: On May 18 of every year, the world celebrates International Museum Day, to highlight the museums’ importance and role in preserving heritage, evoking history, spreading culture and artistic taste, raising educational level, and attracting tourists.
According to the World Council of Museums, the purpose of this event is to provide an opportunity for museum professionals to communicate with the public and acquaint them with the challenges that museums face if they become - according to the council's definition of museums - "institutions in the service of society and in its development."
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, UNESCO, with the support of the World Council of Museums, celebrates the International Day of Museums this year, under the slogan "Museums for Equality: Diversity and Inclusion."
It aims for the celebration to become a meeting point for the diverse viewpoints that shape museum societies and their individuals, and to abandon their prejudices about what they exhibit or what their stories tell about them.
The International Council of Museums (ICOM) established the International Day of Museums in 1977. The organization chooses a different theme for the day every year. Some of the topics include globalization, indigenous peoples, bridging cultural gaps, and concern for the environment.
International Museum Day has become steadily more popular since its inception, with 20,000 museums in more than 90 countries participating in World Museum Day of 2009. In 2012, the number of participating museums jumped to 30,000 in 129 countries.
In 2021, there are more museums worldwide than ever before, due to online visits. Also, there are now more people studying history at the degree level than at any other time in history.