All European museums which have opened or been substantially renewed since January 2016 are eligible to apply. The EMYA Jury is looking for innovations in public quality that are likely to have a significant influence in the national and international museum field.
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The European Museum of the Year Award is the continent’s oldest and most prestigious museum prize. Overseen by the European Museum Forum, since 1977 has been dedicated to promoting innovation and excellence in public quality in museum practice, encouraging networking and exchange of ideas and best practices within the sector. EMF/EMYA works within an overall framework of a commitment to citizenship, democracy and human rights, to sustainability, to bridging cultures and social and political borders. Last year’s EMYA winner was the Design Museum, London. Since 1977 the EMF has worked in partnership with the Council of Europe, which awards the Council of Europe Museum Prize, dedicated to museums which are of the highest quality and celebrate human rights and democracy. Last year’s winner was the War Childhood Museum, Sarajevo. For a full list of previous winners see https://europeanforum.museum/winners/emya/
The focus of EMYA is on innovation in public quality which is something that can be achieved by museums no matter what their size, location, size or collection – museums of every type are encouraged to apply. Over the years, EMYA has evolved from the EMYA and the Council of Europe Museum Prize to a more differentiated scheme adding four more awards: The Silletto Prize, the Kenneth Hudson Award, the Portimao Prize and the Special Commendation for Sustainability. The different awards within the EMYA scheme reflect, represent and emphasize different aspects and dimension of the organisation’s underlying values.
The EMYA annual conference and award ceremony takes place over three days, usually in May the year after application, and is a unique opportunity to get an overview of museum creativity right across Europe and to network with those leading these innovations.