Skip to content

Center for the Future of Museums

Understanding that the dynamic nature of our cultural, political, and economic landscape directly affects how we interact with museums, the Center for the Future of Museums (CFM) helps museums navigate the future.

The Center for the Future of Museums, in collaboration with our community, works to

  • Monitor cultural, technological, political and economic trends that matter to museums
  • Equip museums to help their communities address future challenges
  • Build strong connections among museums and educational, corporate, civic, nonprofit, and government organizations

Learn more about the work of the Center of the Future of Museums:

CFM Blog—read frequent posts about emerging ideas from CFM director Elizabeth Merritt and numerous guest authors

TrendsWatch—the Alliance’s annual forecasting report

Reports and Research

NEW! The AAM Strategic Foresight Toolkit

This new resource provides a comprehensive introduction to strategic foresight—a vital skill set that enables individuals and organizations to anticipate change, craft effective plans, and shape the future they want to see. Enhanced with worksheets, slide presentations, and games, the AAM Strategic Foresight Toolkit can help you in building your own foresight skills. The toolkit can help organizations train staff in the basic tools of futurism and integrate foresight into planning and operations.

Learn more and order your copy today.

Bring the future to your museum or conference

At the Alliance, we love the opportunity to engage with our community face-to-face. Each year we make time for CFM staff to “take the show on the road,” via lectures and workshops.

 CFM’s founder and director Elizabeth Merritt is available for a limited number of engagements. For more information visit our Speakers Bureau and read about our current areas of focus for lectures and workshops.

Fees depend on the length and nature of the presentation, and Alliance member museums receive a discount. These paid engagements help underwrite the free content CFM provides including TrendsWatch, our weekly newsletter Dispatches from the Future of Museums, and the CFM Blog.

If you would like to invite Elizabeth to speak at your museum or conference, contact us at emerritt (at) aam-us.org.

AAM Member-Only Content

AAM Members get exclusive access to premium digital content including:

  • Featured articles from Museum magazine
  • Access to more than 1,500 resource listings from the Resource Center
  • Tools, reports, and templates for equipping your work in museums
Log In

We're Sorry

Your current membership level does not allow you to access this content.

Upgrade Your Membership

Chatting About Museums with ChatGPT

Two months ago, the research and development lab OpenAI released ChatGPT, an interactive “chatbot” powered by artificial intelligence. Chatbots aren’t new (I’ve been writing about …

Trend Alert: Changing Climate Risk

2022 marked a new high in climatic extremes. The US set records for number of tornadoes (29 in March); heat (nearly 1,000 record high temperatures in one week of September alone); and …

The Partisan Divide

How can museums build bridges and foster tolerance to strengthen…

From the President and CEO: Seeing the Future

This article originally appeared in Museum magazine’s January/February 2023 issue, a benefit of AAM membership.  What if someone had told you in 2012 that something called augmented …

A Digital (R)evolution

Has the pandemic sparked an evolutionary leap i…

The Post-pandemic Workplace

How can museums build the workforce they need while creating better, more equitable labor…

Upcoming Events

View All Events

Subscribe to Field Notes!

Packed with stories and insights for museum people, Field Notes is delivered to your inbox every Monday. Once you've completed the form below, confirm your subscription in the email sent to you.

If you are a current AAM member, please sign-up using the email address associated with your account.

Are you a museum professional?

Are you a current AAM member?

Success! Now check your email to confirm your subscription, and please add communications@aam-us.org to your safe sender list.