About / European Museum of the Year Award (EMYA) / Meet the judges /

The maximum 13 and minimum 9 judges who constitute the jury for the EMYA award scheme are appointed by the EMF board of trustees from across the 46 member states of the Council of Europe.

The jury functions autonomously from the EMF Board of Trustees with respect to decisions of nominations and awards. A chair of the jury is appointed by the board of trustees and is an ex-officio member of the board of trustees.

The EMYA judges represent different professional disciplines, high level practical and theoretical museum experience and museological competences, as well as a diversity in gender and age, national, regional and cultural background. They bring extensive knowledge, enthusiasm and expertise to the judging debate, ensuring that each years the winning museums are truly outstanding and diverse.

Judges observe clear rules of conduct and rotate on a strictly defined schedule of 3 (x2) years of service. They are not remunerated for their services, but expenses for travel are covered. They are bound by a strict confidentiality agreement and are required to declare any conflict of interest, to protect the integrity of the judging and selection process.

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Agnes Aljas (Estonia)

Agnes believes that museums are relevant to people and that participation supports cultural institutions to be relevant to visitors and users. She is interested in knowledge based technological solutions and cultural and economic creativity that heritage can support.

Agnes Aljas is a Research Secretary of the Estonian National Museum. She has studied history, ethnology and communication (University of Tartu, University of Turku and University of Aix-en-Provence).

Agnes is giving lectures on memory institutions at the University of Tartu. Her research interests and recent publications focus on audience studies, cultural participation and contemporary collecting. She was part of the team of the new building project of the Estonian National Museum (EMYA 2018, Kenneth Hudson Award).

Agnes is the chair of ICOM Estonia and a board member of ICOM’s International Committee for Museums and Collections of Ethnography (ICME). She joined the EMYA judging panel in January 2021.

Agnes Aljas

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Beat Hächler, Ma (Switzerland)

Beat believes that museums have a creative power to launch debates, to open doors and to involve people. Just do it.

Beat Hächler is the director and curator at the Swiss Alpine Museum in Bern, Switzerland. He studied contemporary history (focus on Spain), German literature and media science in Bern and Madrid, followed by a master’s degree program in scenography in Zurich some years later.

He is interested in contemporary every day life issues and co-developped under these aspects over 18 years the profile of Stapferhaus Lenzburg (EMYA winner 2020). In Bern, he transformed the Swiss Alpine Museum since 2011 with a temporary exhibition hall, opening new perspectives beyond the Alps for global issues. Since 2020 he is part of an experimental transformation process, shaping the local existing museum cluster into a new collaborative museum’s quarter.

Beat was a board member of ICOM Switzerland and he is still active as author and curator reflecting contemporary museological practices.

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Amina Krvavac, Chair of the EMYA Jury (Bosnia and Herzegovina)

Amina believes in museums as spaces for social action and drivers of change, and she is particularly interested in unlocking the potential of museums in transitional justice processes.

Amina Krvavac is the Executive Director at the War Childhood Museum in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina. Amina was a member of a small inaugural team that led a two-year grassroots campaign culminating in the opening of the War Childhood Museum back in 2017. The War Childhood Museum has since been widely recognised and praised for its capacity to contribute to a better understanding of war-affected childhood as a complex social phenomenon.
Amina studied International Relations at the International University of Sarajevo, and Children’s Rights at the University of Geneva.

She is committed to creating exhibitions and workshops that support open and conscious dialogue, and to promoting the idea of museums as platforms for societal healing and reconciliation.

Amina is a member of the Board of Directors of the International Coalition of Site of Conscience Europe – a network of museums, historic sites and memory initiatives connecting past struggles to today’s movement for human rights. She joined the EMYA judging panel in January 2021.

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Danielle Kuijten (The Netherlands)

Danielle is interested in developments that challenge existing concepts of collecting. Her work is very much around networks and participation. She is a strong advocate for collecting practices that centres the care for people.

Danielle Kuijten holds a Master of Museology from the Reinwardt Academy (Amsterdam University of the Arts). She started her museum career as freelancer in the heritage field under the name Heritage Concepting.

Her main focus in projects is on co-ccreation, contemporary collecting, action curating and decolonization of museum praxis. This is also how she started working for Imagine IC, a pioneer in the field of heritage of the contemporary society. Here she has been active in building a participative neighbourhood archive on and in the Amsterdam district Southeast. As co-curator she produced exhibitions on topics like Black Resistance, Queering Southeast and Personal archives of 25 year Bijlmer Flightdisaster. In 2022 she was guest-curator of the first DOMiDlabs: Making Museum Design Participatory in Cologne, Germany. The labs aims to help DOMiD to create a multifaceted and engaging migration museum. Since March of 2023 she is director at Imagine IC.

Danielle is a regular guest on international conferences giving presentations and workshops and is president at COMCOL, ICOM’s international committee for collecting.

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Dominika Mroczkowska-Rusiniak (Poland)

Dominika is interested in how museums interpret the changes that occur in the culture of any given land and how new technologies affect the image of a museum.

Dominika Mroczkowska-Rusiniak is a cultural manager. She studied cross-cultural psychology at the University of Social Science and Humanities in Warsaw, Poland and history at the University of Warsaw and Ca’ Foscari University, Venice, Italy. She also obtained a post-graduate diploma at Warsaw School of Economics, Poland.

Among other professional engagements, she worked at the Peggy Guggenheim Collection in Venice and the National Museum in Warsaw. Since 2016 she has been working at the National Institute for Museums and Public Collections, where she manages an education project and co-organizes various museum award schemes.

She has been a long time national correspondent for EMF. She also lectures at the Faculty of Journalism, Information and Book Studies at Warsaw University.

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Adriana Muñoz, Fd/PhD (Sweden)

Adriana is interested in the relationship between museums as institutions and the current political situation around the world, in how museums construct discourses and ideology using collections and objects, and what their underlying purposes are.

Adriana Muñoz is a curator at the National Museums of World Culture, Sweden. She wrote her PhD in Archaeology about the relationship between collecting, labelling and political structures. She has long experience of working in museums and has worked on numerous exhibitions.

She works with ICOM (International Council of Museums) on problems around the illegal import/export of archaeological plundered objects from Latin America. Further, she has participated in several research projects in different countries since 1998 and has collaborated with a number of universities in Europe and Latin American, not only concerning archaeology, but also questions of heritage. She is a member of Americanist and museological groups; and a referee for the Journal of Museum Management (Canada) and for the Nordisk museologi (Scandinavian), as well as for the Argentinian Fund for Scientific Research and Technology.Recently she has also worked with questions of repatriation.

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Joan Seguí (Spain)

Joan is interested (and believes) in museum as an essential community infrastructure, with a potential and promising active role beyond heritage management and identity representation.

Joan Seguí is the director and curator of L’ETNO, the Valencian Museum of Ethnology (EMYA winner in 2023) in the city of València (Spain). He was born and raised in a small mountain village and studied history in the University of Valencia. He later moved to University of Leicester (UK) to do his MA and a PhD in ethnoarchaeology. Working from L’ENTO, he has been involved in the world of local museums all his professional life. He is particularly interested in ethnographic heritage and the role of local museums as active actors for the development of their communities. He also enjoys experiencing new developments in museography across all range of museums.

He has been a member of the Spanish ICOM board between 2011 and 2017.

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Mathieu Viau-Courville, Ma/PhD (France)

Born in Canada, and brought up in Greece, Mathieu is interested in cross-cultural studies of museums in contemporary contexts. He sees museums –of any kind– as being inclusive spaces that enable and empower diversity and generate meaningful social experiences.

Mathieu is director of the Office de coopération et d’information muséales (Ocim), a national observatory and think tank on museums and heritage co-funded by the Ministry of Higher Education, Research and Innovation and the University of Burgundy, France. He has more than 15 years’ experience working in national museums and universities in Canada, Spain, the Netherlands, France, and Luxembourg. He also conducted extensive field research in South America, primarily Bolivia, where he spent a total of six years, as well as Brazil, where he has been working with colleagues since 2014 in the design of teaching and community engagement initiatives. Mathieu has also been developing research collaborations and workshops in Spain since 2012, particularly in Catalunya and the Basque Country. At ICOM (International Council of Museums), he serves on the board of Museum International and, since 2022, hosts the newly created ICOM Voices podcast.

Mathieu received his PhD in 2011 from the School of World Art Studies and Museology, University of East Anglia, UK. His research interests include co-curation, managerial curatorship, museum activism, memory and postmemory, politics of representation, and citizen engagement and participation.

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Friedrich von Bose, Dr (Germany)

Friedrich regards museums as sites where collaborative work can manifest change that expands far beyond their walls.

Friedrich von Bose is curator and scholar of European Ethnology and museology. He is currently senior researcher of museum studies at the Institute for Social Anthropology and Cultural Studies at the University of Zurich.

For many years, Friedrich has worked at the intersections of critical museology and curatorial practice. Before his current post he was head of research and exhibitions at the State Ethnographic Collections of Saxony (Dresden State Art Collections) with the three ethnological museums in Leipzig, Dresden and Herrnhut (2020-2023), as well as deputy chief curator of Humboldt University of Berlin’s exhibition spaces in the Humboldt Forum (2017-2020). Amongst his main concerns in his curatorial and scholarly work is how the long-standing debates about museum ethics, decolonisation and provenance can manifest in new curatorial formats and practices.

He regularly serves as an advisor to museums and cultural institutions in this regard. Friedrich has been lecturer at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, where he acquired his PhD in 2014, as well as at the University of Basel, where he teaches culture-reflexive management at the Center for Advanced Studies since 2016. To him, working transdisciplinary across institutions and professional fields is both exciting and a central means to collaboratively create meaningful change.

© Kirill Semkow

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Zandra Yeaman (Scotland)

Zandra Yeaman believes museums have the power to shape our understanding of the past, how this has developed our present, to enable us to create an equitable future for all.

Zandra Yeaman is the Curator of Discomfort at The Hunterian, University of Glasgow. She has a background in anti-racist activism in Scotland, working for social justice and equality.

Previously, Zandra was the Community Campaigns Officer for the Coalition for Racial Equality and Rights, responsible for coordinating Black History Month events programme in Scotland. For more than a decade, she has assisted the Scottish arts and heritage sector, helping to question working practices, involve new audiences and ensure that anti-racism, equality and diversity is at the heart of all they do.

The Hunterian’ s Curating Discomfort programme was devised in 2021 to challenge historical power dynamics and, through ‘uncomfortable’ processes, empower new forms of collaboration between community groups, museum professionals and academics.

International recognition for ‘Curating Discomfort’ has shaped a new project, ‘Power in This Place: Unfinished Conversations’ (2022-2025) that seeks to develop further the process of change at The Hunterian.

Zandra’s work uses the museum’s collections to create narratives that no longer privilege colonisers but re-frame interpretation and acknowledge and represent our shared histories.

Exploring the legacies of Empire, Zandra works in collaboration to remove white supremacy as an economic and cultural basis through which white western ideas have exercised cultural superiority through control of knowledge, text, and institutional resources.

Zandra is the Chair of the Board of Directors at Street Level Photoworks, Glasgow, and is a member of the board of Directors at V&A Dundee, Scotland.