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Frequently Asked Questions

*ICOM Secretariat FAQ page

Membership (Join/Renew)

What is the difference between ICOM and ICOM-US membership?
ICOM, the International Council of Museums, is the main organization and ICOM-US is the United States national committee of ICOM. You join ICOM through your national committee (ICOM-US).

Your ICOM-US membership gives you all the access to ICOM-US benefits as well as all the benefits of being a member of ICOM (National and International). You will be an ICOM member, through the US chapter. More information about ICOM can be found here. You can also find a complete list of all national committees here.

How to join?
Join by completing the application form on our Join Us page HERE. Your application will be sent for approval in the system and can take 4-6 weeks to be finalized. Once you are approved, you will receive an update from the ICOM Secretariat that your application has been accepted and a link to provide membership payment, if not already submitted. Once you have submitted payment, your membership materials will be mailed to you by USPS from the ICOM-US office in Washington, DC. 

How to renew?

1. Online

Pay the invoice directly in your renewal email from ICOM-US with a credit card OR you can sign in to your profile here and click "renew" in the gray header. 

2. By Check

Please make checks out to ICOM-US Membership and send to the mailing address below. 

ICOM National Committee for the United States
4301 50th Street NW
Suite 300 PMB 1042
Washington, DC 20016

3. By Phone

To renew over the phone, please provide your first and last name to Morgan Denault, Membership Coordinator at (410) 897-7597. 

*Once you have submitted payment, your annual membership sticker will be mailed to you by USPS ASAP.

Approval process for joining ICOM-US as a new member:
The approval process can up to 4-6 weeks to be finalized. Your applications are approved by ICOM-US and then sent to ICOM Paris for final approval. ICOM Paris then will manufacture the ICOM cards and send to the ICOM-US office in DC for distribution. ICOM-US will then send new members all their membership materials, including the membership letter, ICOM card, and annual ICOM sticker to validate the card.

Individual membership vs. Institutional membership (benefits of international committees, membership number and ICOM cards):
With institutional membership, an institution can assign 3 representatives to join and be involved in international committees and also use the institutional membership number to attend conferences. If the institution would like to assign those (3) members interested in membership as their representatives, they can join that way. However, institutions receive a certain amount of ICOM cards depending on their membership level (min: 3 to max: 8 cards). These cards can be distributed however the institution would like. These cards have the institutional name and institutional number on the card. Some institutions assign a specific person to each card, others have one admin hold onto the cards and let all staff use them on an as need basis. For example, if an institution does not renew their membership, then those (3) representatives for that institution cannot be active in ICOM leadership until they are renewed. This may be tricky if the institution has already given out their institutional membership cards to other representatives at a time and then would have to approve the representative change to use the membership number to be involved in international committees or us the membership number for a conference.

Joining as individual member, you can join several international committees (only voting member of one committee and join up to three additional committees- four total) and receive your own individual membership number specific only to you and your own ICOM card (your name and membership number). As an individual member, you can renew on your own and create your own network within ICOM. 

Where is the ICOM card accepted?

As museum professionals respecting the ICOM Code of Ethics for Museums, ICOM members can, upon presentation of their membership card, access the collections of many institutions around the world for discounted or free entry. This access is provided in institutional member museums but also in a number of other museums on a voluntary basis. Here is a list of all active ICOM-US Institutional Members, where your ICOM card will be accepted in the United States. 

The acceptance of the card is at the discretion of individual venues, museums, and institutions. We highly suggest you please contact the venue ahead of your visit to check if the ICOM card is accepted and/or if there is a booking procedure. This is especially important during the current COVID-19 pandemic and as museums in the US and around the world begin to reopen. Capacity will be limited for museum and exhibition entry for a period of time.

This is a difficult time for museums so we ask for your patience and understanding if museums need to make temporary changes, or temporarily suspend, acceptance of the ICOM card. Museums are not taking such decisions lightly. We are keeping in touch with all of our members - in the US and abroad - in regards to museums who offer free/discounted entry and sector professionals who use the card.

Please contact us at [email protected] if you become aware of any updates to acceptance to museums. 

How to get involved

The best way to get involved is through an international committee

Can I join more than one international committee?
Yes, individuals can only be a voting member (board member or leadership) of one international committee, and can participate on up to three additional international committees.

Updates or Changes to Membership

How to receive replacement card?
Please request a replacement card by completing this form. The ICOM card will be manufactured in Paris and then sent to the ICOM-US Washington, DC office for distribution.

How to update contact information or new affiliation?
Please login to your profile here and update your information, please make sure to save your changes. Notifications of the changes will be sent to ICOM-US and the ICOM Secretariat. 

For more information, please email your question to [email protected].

Last Updated on Friday, October 23, 2020 11:07 AM