New Grants Guides for Cultural Institutions in the United States, Canada, Europe, and Latin America

Gallery Systems is releasing our much-anticipated 2021 museum grants guides, fully updated and ready to download. To help you plan for a future that can only be brighter.

For 2021, we have prepared five grants guides: United States, Canada, Europe and the United Kingdom, Spain and Latin America (en español), and a guide for museum conservation. Each guide is filled with a wide selection of opportunities, from government-issued grants to private funding and yearly awards.

Secure external funding to be able to delve into new projects, such as digitizing your workflows or expanding your online collections to reach a broader audience, and to support your museum operations, collections care, and professional development. Gallery Systems wishes you the best in 2021 and beyond.

Planning for the Future: During and After COVID-19

The toll of this past year for museums should not be understated. As the COVID-19 pandemic took hold in March, institutions were forced to quickly readjust their operations, often necessitating costly and disheartening fallout.

Going into 2021, obtaining additional funding is crucial. To assist on the financial side of things, Gallery Systems has expanded its grants guides to include more opportunities than ever, including new pandemic relief funds and digital grants that encourage museums to connect online with the public.

Bringing Your Collections Online

Already a familiar sight on museum websites, online collections took on new importance in 2020. With many museums temporarily closed due to COVID-19, or running at limited visitor capacity, an increasing number of institutions chose to launch, or further develop, public-facing collections websites.

Often created through online collections software, including eMuseum by Gallery Systems, these sites offer a virtual portal into an institution, showcasing entire collections and recreating the exhibition experience in a digital setting.

Learn more about eMuseum in our recent case studies with Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art and Shangri La Museum of Islamic Art, Culture & Design. Or gather inspiration for your online collection by browsing the six eMuseum sites we recently profiled.

Digitizing to Better Manage Collections

Offsetting the cost of digitizing your collections can be key to undertaking such projects. While digitization presents a definite time commitment, a lack of allocatable funding is often the underlying reason why institutions hesitate to invest in the necessary tools and technology.

Fortunately, many grants exist to specifically assist museums with covering digital-related costs, allowing them to better manage their collections in 2021. Software that may be eligible for funding includes digital asset management systems, such as TMS Media Studio, which facilitates the organizing, use, and sharing of media files.

Introducing the 2021 Museum Grants and Funding Opportunities

Grants can make a world of difference to a museum’s year. To pave the road for future endeavours, Gallery Systems has launched five separate grants guides that compile the best in international offerings for cultural institutions, from archives to art galleries, and history and natural history institutions to university museums. Find download links to the guides below, along with samples of grants and funding opportunities you will find within.

Museum Grants for the U.S.

Facing the hurdles left by 2020 could begin with securing more funding for 2021. With digital and online projects taking the forefront for many museums, grants are integral to acquiring the new software and tools needed to meet your objectives and engage a wider audience. Gain full access to the 2021 museums grants guide for the U.S. by clicking the link below.

Institute of Museum and Library Services

Museums Empowered: Professional Development Opportunities for Museums Staff
Museums Empowered: Professional Development Opportunities for Museum Staff is a special initiative to support projects that use professional development for staff to generate systemic change within an institution. Projects can fall within four categories: digital technology, diversity and inclusion, organizational management, and evaluation (of tools and best practices to support museum outcomes.)

Luce Foundation

Responsive Grants – American Art Collections
Offered by the Luce Foundation, the Responsive Grants program supports projects by arts and culture institutions that protect collections deemed important to the overall field of museums, libraries, and culture. Many collections-related ventures are eligible, including conservation projects, collection digitization, and large installations.

National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH)

Digital Humanities Advancement Grant
The Digital Humanities Advancement Grants (DHAG) program supports digital projects at different stages of their lifecycles. Experimentation, reuse, and extensibility are hallmarks of this program, leading to innovative work that can scale to enhance scholarly research, teaching, and public programming in the humanities. This program is offered twice per year. Proposals are welcome for digital initiatives in any area of the humanities.

Museum Grants for Canada

Secure funding for your Canadian museum with the help of our selected nationwide and provincial grants. Administered by government branches, arts councils, and private institutions, these funding opportunities provide broad-reaching support of all areas of your collections care and professional development. Special granting programs are available to support Indigenous arts and culture and projects celebrating diversity within Canada.

Canada Council for the Arts (CCA)

Transformation of Organizational Models
Part of the Canada Council’s Digital Strategy Fund, the Transformation of Organizational Models grant helps organizations digitalize their workflows. This grant could be used towards the digitization of your collections and moving your records to a digital database system. Applications are accepted on an ongoing basis.

Government of Canada

Collections Management
Under the umbrella of the Museums Assistance Program (MAP), the Collections Management component delivers funding for museum projects devoted to improving knowledge, skills, and key practices. In May 2020, MAP received an additional $53 million through the Emergency Support Fund for Cultural, Heritage and Sport Organizations to better support Canadian museums affected by COVID-19.

Government of Canada

Documentary Heritage Communities Program
Each year, Library and Archives Canada (LAC) provides $1.5 million to documentary heritage organizations across the country. This funding helps to ensure that Canada’s continuing memory is documented, preserved, and accessible. January 12, 2021 is the deadline for the 2021-22 funding season.

Museum Grants for Europe and the UK

Conserving the wealth of heritage in European museums and cultural institutions is aided by a generous selection of available grants. Through continentwide and country-specific grants, Gallery Systems’ grants guide for Europe and the UK provides opportunities to enhance your collections management, conservation, and the showcasing of priceless objects both within your institution and beyond nation borders. Click the button below to download your full European guide of 2021 museum grants.

EEA and Norway Grants

Conservation and Revitalization of Cultural and Natural Heritage
The EEA and Norway Grants, funded by Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway, support cultural heritage programs in 14 beneficiary countries, contributing to the conservation and revitalization of cultural and natural heritage and improving public accessibility. These grants prioritize sites dealing with financial strain and in need of restoration.

European Commission

Horizon 2020
Offering over €80B in funding over a 7-year period, Horizon 2020 is the European Union’s largest programme devoted to research and innovation to date. Designed to fuel the economies of European nations, this multifaceted program includes granting opportunities for museums, such as the new European Museum Collaboration and Innovation Space initiative.

Rothschild Foundation Hanadiv Europe

Museums Grant Programme
The Rothschild Foundation supports the preservation of Jewish culture around the world. Through multiple annual museum grants open to European institutions, Rothschild funds both traveling and permanent exhibitions, collections management, professional development, and multi-museum exhibition planning.

Museum Grants for Spain and Latin America

Finding funding opportunities remains a vital step for Latin American museums in the care and growth of their collections. Reducing economic barriers allows institutions to enhance their operations and spread cultural awareness, both in Latin America and Spain. To support these worthy objectives, many international funding bodies have extended their reach to Latin America, while government and private agencies also dole out annual sums to these nations and Spain, respectively. See the latest 2021 museum grants in our Spanish language guide.

Inter-American Development Bank

Project Funding
The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) works to improve the quality of life by reducing inequality in Latin America and the Caribbean through economic and technical support. The IDB has financed projects focused on in the conservation of objects and education in museums within such countries as Brazil, Argentina, Peru, Uruguay, Colombia, Ecuador, Bolivia, and Paraguay.

Spanish Fundraising Association

Fundraising Training and Resources
The Spanish Fundraising Association (AEFr) is a non-profit organization whose objective is the development of philanthropy and the raising of funds in Spain. One of the AEFr’s core activities is helping non-profit organizations, including museums and cultural institutions, develop strategies to raise funds through the engagement of citizens and private institutions.


International Fund for Cultural Diversity (IFCD)
UNESCO’s International Fund for Cultural Diversity (IFCD) supports projects aimed at enhancing the cultural sector, mainly through activities that conserve and share cultural diversity and support heritage infrastructure. To promote sustainable growth and reduce financial barriers, funding is offered to non-profit institutions and individuals in developing countries.

Museum Grants for Conservation and Conservators

Ensure the preservation of your collections objects for generations to enjoy by attaining funding for conservation projects. International grant programs are presently accepting applications from institutions interested in furthering their conservation of artwork and heritage objects, for instance funding new undertakings or conservation documentation software. Or, alternately, in advancing the professional development of conservators. Download our complete museum conservation guide below.

Bank of America

Art Conservation Project
The Bank of America Art Conservation Project is a unique program that provides grants to nonprofit museums throughout the world. This initiative supports of projects that conserve historically or culturally significant works of art in danger of degeneration, including works that have been designated as national treasures.

The Getty Foundation

Conserving Canvas
Presented by The Getty Foundation, Conserving Canvas is an international granting program, supporting conservation projects focused on the preservation of canvas paintings. The grant can be applied to museum projects or professional development opportunities, such as trainings and residencies for conservators in the field of canvas preservation.

National Center for Preservation Technology and Training

Preservation Technology and Training Grants
The Preservation Technology and Training (PTT) Grants program awards funding for conservation research that develops new technologies, or adapts existing technologies, to conserve heritage objects. Grant recipients are expected to “respond to national needs in the field of historic preservation,” according to the online guidelines.

Partnering with Gallery Systems

Need help achieving your collections goals in 2021? The Gallery Systems team is on-hand to assist you with collections management software and services, personalized to meet your institution’s unique needs. We also have proven experience in supporting institutions in successfully acquiring grants and funding. Get in touch for additional information.

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