How we turned our conference greener?

Many of you were curious and asked us questions about our ecological approach to a conference after what we have done in Katowice in 2019.

Making a gathering of 250 people environmentally responsible is far from an easy task, but we have done everything we can to minimize our carbon footprint as much as possible. On top of partnering with the Museum Slaskie which is the only polish museum that received the Green Key Environmental Certificate, turning WAM green was a story of details.

From our biodegradable participant badges to be planted on diverted public transport, I’ll detail in this article what made the 2019 edition of We Are Museums so special.

Katowice, where else?

Due to its mining heritage, the city of Katowice has extensive experience in levelling the effects of long-term environmental degradation.

Also, the Silesian region is making a significant contribution to the transformation of the region into a leader in innovation and new technologies with the development of modern business sectors and sustainable investments.

Environmental responsibility of the Muzeum Śląskie

Just in recent months Muzeum Śląskie actively participated in the COP24 climate change conference, which took place in Katowice in December 2018, by preparing a special programme of exhibitions and events. These included the art installation titled “Let’s Talk About Garbage”, the World Press Photo exhibition titled “Our world: The Stories that Matter”, two video installations: “Ancient Forest Alliance” and “Great Reef Barrier”, a screening of the film Waste Land and others. Muzeum Śląskie was also included in the programme of COP24, organising a panel discussion titled “The Future is Now! Artistic Involvement of the Industry”.

Nature @The Muzeum Slaskie

The green areas of Muzeum Śląskie in Katowice meet the needs of residents of Katowice, as well as those of insect pollinators, including bees — in 2018, a municipal apiary with several hives was created on the Museum’s premises. Precise selection of plant species on the Museum’s premises ensures availability of feed for insects from early spring to autumn.

Thanks to the presence of bees on the premises of Muzeum Śląskie and planting nectar sources, we could expand our portfolio of educational activities in the Museum to include beekeeping workshops for school and nursery groups.

Photo by Michał Jędrzejowski / Muzeum Śląskie w Katowicach

Our programme turned green

We prepared one session “Museums as green revolution leaders” with exceptional guests speakers including Cynthia E Smith, Curator of Socially Responsible Design at the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum (United States), Dr Kristin Alford, Director of the MOD Museum (Australia), Morien Rees, Museum Development Advisor at the Varanger Museum and Chair of the ICOM Working Group on Sustainability (Norway), Bridget McKenzie, Founder of the Climate Museum UK at Flow Associates (United Kingdom) and Ewa Chomicka representatives of the Climate Collective by the POLIN Museum and the Silesian Museum (Poland).

Among the workshops, participants will be able to attend the session “Towards Sustainable Museums” by Tessa Askamp, Project Manager, Sustainability Expert, VISSCH+STAM (The Netherlands) and “Be the Captain Planet of your institution” by Artur Povodor, sales strategist at Cultware Sp. Zoo. (Poland).

And as a lovely note, we organised a private visit to the Upper Silesian Ethnographic Parc where we could learn and taste traditional recipes and living practices. Our second evening has been at a former factory turned into a museum and event center.

The Climate Collective Poland

Sustainable practices and consumption

One-time produced things

Food and Diet.


Turning green is not just about recycling and consuming differently. It is a question of mindset and values. New behaviours and discourses should be shared. Priorities should be set differently, always in respect of the Planet. We are far away from being perfect, but at least, we are working towards being better.



Founder of @wearemuseums. Co-founder of @alterhen. Arts & Culture for the Tezos ecosystem. Visual artist nudging for nature awareness.

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Diane Drubay

Founder of @wearemuseums. Co-founder of @alterhen. Arts & Culture for the Tezos ecosystem. Visual artist nudging for nature awareness.