Collecting the Future: Museums, Communities and Climate Change

October 2, 2013 - October 4, 2013

Co-convened by the American Museum of Natural History and the National Museum of Australia

Download Workshop Program


Participating organizations include:

  • National Museum of Australia
  • American Museum of Natural History
  • Center for Art & Environment, Nevada Museum of Art
  • Center for Culture, History and Environment (CHE), University of Wisconsin Madison
  • Deutsches Museum
  • Environmental Humanities initiative, University of Sydney
  • KTH Environmental Humanities Laboratory, Stockholm
  • Research School of Humanities and the Arts, Australian National University


Jenny Newell, Curator, Pacific Ethnology, American Museum of Natural History
Libby Robin, Senior Research Fellow, National Museum of Australia
Kirsten Wehner, Head Curator, People and the Environment, National Museum of Australia
Jacklyn Lacey, Curatorial Associate, American Museum of Natural History


Jenny Newell, Australian Museum,

 Attendees at the Collecting the Future workshop, American Museum of Natural History, October, 2013. 

Attendees at the Collecting the Future workshop, American Museum of Natural History, October, 2013. 


The Anthropocene in Museums: Reflections, Projections and Imaginings

December 3, 2015 - December 4, 2015

The Anthropocene is an idea now challenging and inspiring museums of many different kinds and in many parts of the world. This invitational workshop focused on how museum scholars, curators and other practitioners have responded to this concept with new experiments in collecting, exhibiting and programming. It explored what the community of museums engaged with contemporary cultural and environmental issues has learned to date about working with and in the Anthropocene, and asked how these experiences might inform future projects.

Presentations and discussion explored the Deutsches Museum’s Welcome to the Anthropocene exhibition, focusing particularly on how audiences have responded to this ground-breaking gallery. This project was drawn into conversation with other current and emerging projects, including the Deutsches Museum’s forthcoming Energy Transitions exhibition, the National Museum of Australia’s Australia in the Age of Humans project and the American Museum of Natural History’s work with Pacific museums responding to climate change.

For more information about this event please visit the Museums and Climate Change Network Blog.

For the full workshop guide please refer to:

The Anthropocene in Museums Workshop program



Please direct enquiries to one of the convenors:

Kirsten Wehner, Sydney Environment Institute

Libby Robin, Australian National University,

Jenny Newell, Australian Museum,

Helmuth Trischler, Rachel Carson Center / Deutsches Museum,

This workshop was sponsored by the Deutsches Museum, the Rachel Carson Center for Environment and Society ( ) and the Museums and Climate Change Network.


Narratives of climate change symposium - university of newcastle

5-6 july 2018

The struggle to solve the problem of human-forced climate change - which requires us to stop using fossil fuels such as coal, oil and gas and end deforestation - has become an ever-present backdrop to political discourse, an intermittent topic in popular media, a central concern for community and social movements in the Global South and North, and a magnet for scholarly engagement.

The climate change problem is a disruptive, and potentially creative force that challenges, among other things, diverse ways of living, expectations of a good life, the dominant patterns of production and consumption, dominant frameworks of knowledge and the political, the fundamental precepts of legal systems, and the presupposition that our children’s children will inherit a world in which humans and the greater community of life can flourish.

At the same time, discourses around climate change risk invisibilising other histories of power and exploitation, such as colonialism, that have long inflicted violences upon First Nations peoples and their lifeworlds, and which underpin the reality that both the impacts and root causes of climate change are experienced disproportionally by the most vulnerable. Indeed, some climate change interventions serve to undermine rather than sustain Earth.