In the aftermath of COP26 and the agreement of the Glasgow Climate Pact, the UK is more committed than ever to increasing global ambition towards the transition to a zero-carbon economy and to learning from others in this common endeavour. Cultural organisations will be at the forefront of tackling such questions and actively co-shaping the social debate. Museums in the UK are passionate about serving their local communities and engaging audiences, and the UK is keen to build on the strong cultural ties with Greece to foster the creation of an impactful bilateral cultural network exchanging best practice and developing joint activities – opportunities abound. The Greening the Museums programme is a series of four workshops delivered jointly by the British Council Greece and the British Embassy Athens, with UK government funding, to foster the dialogue on innovative ways to turn museums into leading sustainability hubs. Emerging from the aims and objectives of British Council’s Museums Revisited capacity building programme, the workshops aim in particular at supporting cultural professionals in implementing low or no cost actions to improve the environmental footprint of museums, developing public awareness campaigns around sustainable growth in an urban context and developing bilateral green partnerships in the cultural space. The CoMuseum international museum conference in Greece is the flagship programme of the Museums Revisited in the EU initiative. It highlights contemporary challenges and creates a global network of professionals who wish to co-design a ‘culture-edge’ future for our societies. Comuseum 2021 focused on four strands:

  • sustainability and digital strategies.
  • the future of collections, curating and storytelling.
  • the social impact of museums and cultural organisations.
  • the roles of museums in the climate crisis.

The Greening the Museum series kicked off during the 11th CoMuseum International Conference on (Re)Positioning the Museum of Tomorrow” (1-3 December 2021) and was curated by Iphigenia Taxopoulou, General Secretary, mitos21, Julie’s Bicycle Associate. Julie’s Bicycle is a pioneering British not-for-profit organisation mobilising arts and culture to tackle the climate and ecological crisis. The British Embassy and the British Council would like to warmly thank Iphigenia for her valuable insights and commitment to this work. Special thanks are also due to Lucia Pietroiusti, Founder, General Ecology, Serpentine Galleries, who co-curated the first workshop on “Curating in Times of Climate and Ecological Crisis”. Additionally we would like to thank our workshop leaders Claire Buckley, Environmental Sustainability Consultant at Julie’s Bicycle, Caitlin Southwick, Museum Sustainability Expert and Executive Director at KiCulture, Sara Kassam, Sustainability Lead at the Victoria & Albert Museum (V&A) and Catherine Bottrill, Blenheim’s Sustainability Consultant, CEO Pilio and Julie’s Bicycle Associate. 4 We further extend our warmest thanks to Dina Ntziora, Cultural Manager & Community Engagement Consultant, for preparing this report summary. Finally, yet importantly, we are most grateful to our wonderful workshop participants for their active engagement and constructive comments.

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