European Museum of the Year Award

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This article is about a Europe-wide award. For the annual UK-specific award, see Museum of the Year.
Logo European Museum of the Year Award

The European Museum of the Year Award (EMYA) is the longest running and most prestigious museum award in Europe, presented each year by the European Museum Forum (EMF) under the auspices of the Council of Europe.[1] It was founded in 1977 by journalist, anti-museologist, broadcaster and book author Kenneth Hudson.[2] Museums in 47 European countries, all members of the Council of Europe, can take part in the competition if they are newly opened or have undergone modernization or expansion in the past two years.

Aim of the European Museum of the Year Award is to recognize excellence in the European museum scene and to encourage and promote innovative processes in the international museum landscape. The Award goes to a museum which contributes most directly to attracting audiences and satisfying its visitors with unique atmosphere, imaginative interpretation and presentation, a creative approach to education and social responsibility.

EMYA is awarded to two kinds of museums:[3]

  • Established museums that have undergone modernization or expansion during the past two years.
  • New museums opened to the public in the previous two years.

Past winners have been both large and small museums, public and private ones, and whatever their subject or their nationality: they all showed outstanding public quality and changed the standard of quality in museums within Europe.

Two more awards are simultaneously presented by the European Museum Forum: the Kenneth Hudson Award, and the Silletto Prize. See European Museum Forum for more information.

European Museum of the Year winners[edit]

Year Museum Location Country Ref
1977 Ironbridge Gorge Museum Trust Ironbridge  United Kingdom
1978 Schloss Rheydt Museum Mönchengladbach  West Germany
1979 Museum of the Camargue Arles  France
1980 Catharine Convent Museum Utrecht  Netherlands
1981 Folk Art Museum Nafplio  Greece
1982 Museum of Art and History Saint-Denis  France
1983 Museum Sarganserland Sargans   Switzerland
1984 Zuiderzee Museum Enkhuizen  Netherlands
1987 Beamish Museum Stanley  United Kingdom
1988 Brandts Museum Odense  Denmark
1989 Sundsvall Museum Sundsvall  Sweden
1990 Fourmies-Trélon Regional Ecomuseum Fourmies  France
1991 Leventio Museum Nicosia  Cyprus
1992 State Museum of Technology and Work Mannheim  Germany
1993 Alta Museum Alta  Norway
1994 National Museum of Denmark Copenhagen  Denmark
1995 Olympic Museum Lausanne   Switzerland
1996 Museum of the Romanian Peasant Bucharest  Romania
1997 Museum of Anatolian Civilizations Ankara  Turkey
1998 National Conservation Centre Liverpool  United Kingdom
1999 French Museum of Playing Cards Issy-les-Moulineaux  France
2000 Guggenheim Museum Bilbao Bilbao  Spain
2001 National Railway Museum York  United Kingdom [4]
2002 Chester Beatty Library Dublin  Ireland [5]
2003 Victoria and Albert Museum - British Galleries London  United Kingdom [6]
2004 Archaeological Museum of Alicante Alicante  Spain
2005 Netherlands Open Air Museum Arnhem  Netherlands
2006 CosmoCaixa Barcelona  Spain [7]
2007 German Emigration Center Bremerhaven  Germany
2008 Kumu Art Museum Tallinn  Estonia
2009 Salzburg Museum Salzburg  Austria
2010 Ozeaneum Stralsund  Germany [8]
2011 Gallo-Roman Museum of Tongeren Tongeren  Belgium [9]
2012 Medina Azahara Museum Córdoba  Spain
2013 Riverside Museum Glasgow  United Kingdom
2014 The Museum of Innocence Istanbul  Turkey
2015 Rijksmuseum Amsterdam  Netherlands

See also[edit]


  1. ^ European Museum Forum, Council of Europe.
  2. ^ Museum of Broken Relationships wins Kenneth Hudson Award, European Cultural Foundation.
  3. ^ European Museum of the Year Award. BRICKS Project: Building resources for Integrated Cultural knowledge Services, 2005.
  4. ^ Maev Kennedy (1 May 2002). "Steaming". The Guardian (London). Retrieved 2008-03-18. 
  5. ^ Brian Lavery (17 July 2002). "Arts Abroad; An Irish Castle for Religious Manuscripts". The New York Times. Retrieved 2008-03-18. 
  6. ^ Jonathan Glancey (13 September 2004). "Spiralling into Oblivion". New Statesman. Retrieved 2008-03-18. 
  7. ^ "Top European Museum Prize Goes to Spain". Khaleej Times. 14 May 2006. Retrieved 2008-03-18. [dead link]
  8. ^ 2010 European Museum of the Year Award, Tampere, Finland, 19–22 May 2010.
  9. ^ "The Gallo-Roman Museum in Tongeren, Belgium, won the European Museum of the Year Award 2011" (PDF) (Press release). European Museum Forum. 21 May 2011. Retrieved 2 July 2011. 

External links[edit]