Who We Are

  

ICOM was the brainchild of American attorney and civic benefactor Chauncey J. Hamlin (1881-1963), who also served as its first president. He and Georges Salles, then director of French museums, invited eminent museologists to an international meeting in Paris in 1946. One year later, Hamlin secured recognition from UNESCO in the form of a cooperation agreement and ICOM was born.

Today, ICOM—based at UNESCO’s headquarters in Paris—represents 35,000 museum professionals at 20,000 museums in 137 countries and territories.The General Secretariat's international team implements the decisions taken by the Executive Board, works in accordance with the strategic plan, coordinates the committees’ activities, manages the programs linked to ICOM’s missions, and provides services to the organization's members. 

Members join ICOM through one of 119 National Committees. ICOM-US represents and advocates for U.S. interests within ICOM. A Board of Directors, elected by the committee membership at the annual meeting, governs ICOM-US.

One of the most rewarding ways to become involved in ICOM is through its International Committees listed below.

 International Committees:

AVICOM
 International Committee for Audiovisual, New Technologies and Social Media
CAMOC
 International Committee for the Collections and Activities of Museums of Cities
CECA
 International Committee for Education and Cultural Action
CIDOC
 International Committee for Documentation
CIMCIM
 International Committee of Museums and Collections of Instruments and Music
CIMUSET
 International Committee for Museums and Collections of Science and Technology
CIPEG
 International Committee for Egyptology
COMCOL
 International Committee for Collecting
COSTUME
 International Committee for Museums and Collections of Costume
DEMHIST
 International Committee for Historic House Museums
GLASS
 International Committee for Museums and Collections of Glass
ICAMT
 International Committee for Architecture and Museum Techniques
ICDAD
 International Committee for Museums and Collections of Decorative Arts and Design
ICEE
 International Committee for Exhibitions and Exchange
ICFA
 International Committee for Museums and Collections of Fine Arts
ICLM
 International Committee for Literary Museums
ICMAH
 International Committee for Museums and Collections of Archaeology and History
ICME
 International Committee for Museums and Collections of Ethnography
ICMEMO
 International Committee of Memorial Museums in Remembrance of the Victims of Public Crimes
ICMS
 International Committee for Museum Security
ICOFOM
 International Committee for Museology
ICOM-CC
 International Committee for Conservation
ICOMAM
 International Committee for Museums and Collections of Arms and Military History
ICOMON
 International Committee for Money and Banking Museums
ICR
 International Committee for Regional Museums
ICTOP
 International Committee for the Training of Personnel
INTERCOM
 International Committee for Museum Management
MPR
 International Committee for Marketing and Public Relations
NATHIST
 International Committee for Museums and Collections of Natural History
UMAC
 International Committee for University Museums and Collections