The Bank of Canada Museum Goes International

By: Ken Ross


Unveiling the Bank of Canada Museum to the World

Well, to a chunk of it anyway. Every year the conference of the International Federation of Finance Museums (IFFM) draws museum directors from five continents to a get-together aimed at sharing best-practices and keeping up with the latest trends in the world of financial museums. Many of the delegates had been following our progress at the Bank of Canada Museum over the past four years, and there was a level of anticipation this year, because they knew I was going to talk to them about our opening and our experience to date.

This year was the Bank’s first opportunity to attend the conference with a museum in fully-operational mode back home, something which gave me the opportunity to step onto the stage as a featured speaker, offering the Bank’s perspective on what our teams accomplished. The presentation was met with enthusiastic interest.

Ken Ross unveiled the Bank of Canada Museum to the World at the International Federation of Finance Museums.

From Paris to Mexico City; Museum Directors Need to Know

Philippe Gineste, Director of CitéCo (Cité de l’Économie et de la Monnaie) in Paris, set to open in 2019, took me aside early on to ask me about the pitfalls and opportunities the Bank of Canada had faced putting together our Museum. His interest was more than passing; his team at CitéCo is gearing up for a full year of trying to get all the myriad things they need done, done. He was happy to know we would offer the benefit of our experience whenever he wanted.

Philip List, Director of the host museum Erste Financial Life Park in Vienna, was happy to compare notes, given that he had just completed a similar museum earlier this year.

Silvia Singer, CEO of the Museo Interactivo de Economía in Mexico City, one of the early inspirations for the new Bank of Canada Museum, told me enthusiastically that she was planning to get to Ottawa as soon as possible to see for herself.

Philip List, Director Erste Financial Life Park, Vienna Austria

Philip List, Director Erste Financial Life Park, Vienna Austria.

Silvia Singer, CEO of the Museo Interactivo de Economía (MIDE) in Mexico City

Silvia Singer, CEO of the Museo Interactivo de Economía (MIDE) in Mexico City. The MIDE provided a great deal of inspiration for the Bank of Canada Museum.

A Conference About Museums’ Place in Economic and Financial Literacy

For the past four years now, the Bank of Canada Museum has been a member of the IFFM, an organization promoting the work of financial and central bank museums from North, Central and South America, Europe, Asia and Africa. The October conference featured numerous presentations and workshops covering different aspects of the members’ work, as well as some lively debates on the state of financial and economic literacy in the world.

I was able to participate in a number of workshops with a variety of international colleagues.

I was able to participate in a number of workshops with a variety of international colleagues.

IFFM workshop on economic literacy and gender issues.

IFFM workshop on economic literacy and gender issues.


I was proud to be able to present the new Bank of Canada Museum to museum directors from around the world.

I was proud to be able to present the new Bank of Canada Museum to museum directors from around the world.

The IFFM draws delegates from the Americas, Europe, Asia and Africa.

The IFFM draws delegates from the Americas, Europe, Asia and Africa.



IAnnamaria Lusardi, Academic Director of Global Financial Literacy Centre, Washington DC.

Annamaria Lusardi, Academic Director of Global Financial Literacy Centre, Washington DC.

One of the joys of this conference is catching up with colleagues; here I am with Jakub Kunert of the Czech National Bank.

One of the joys of this conference is catching up with colleagues; here I am with Jakub Kunert of the Czech National Bank.


Content Type(s): Blog

The Museum Blog

August 11, 2014 Why Go to Conferences?

By: Caroline Roberts


Art Gallery of Ontario
A time to take a break from the office, meet with old friends and make new ones, party and have a good time… Going to a conference is all of these things. But it is so much more besides.
Content Type(s): Blog

August 6, 2014 The Senior Deputy Governor’s Signature

By: Graham Iddon


Steven S. Poloz & Carolyn Wilkins
For much of their history, Canadian bank notes have represented a promise, a guarantee that they could be redeemed for “specie” (gold and silver coins) at their parent institution.
Content Type(s): Blog

July 28, 2014 Becoming a Collector V

By: Graham Iddon


Visual glossary of design and security details of Canadian Bank Note: 2004, $20 face
Suppose you walk into a bar frequented by currency collectors and in an attempt to join in you refer to a ‘planchette’ as a ‘rosette’ (beer mugs hit the tables and the pianist stops playing). This could be pretty humiliating and you’ll probably never be able to go to that bar again, at least not on numismatic night.
Content Type(s): Blog

July 21, 2014 Becoming a Collector IV

By: Graham Iddon


Visual glossary of design details of Canadian coins
Now that you have a grasp of preservation techniques for coins, you might want to familiarize yourself with the finer points of their anatomy. It is all part of your numismatic education and besides, you need to be informed and sound informed when you are buying coins at flea markets or coin fairs.
Content Type(s): Blog

July 10, 2014 The Empress of Ireland Exhibition Opens

By: Graham Iddon


Entrance to the exhibition proper, cross the gangplank and board the Empress
This past 29 May was the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the Empress of Ireland and the natural evening to hold the opening event for Canada’s Titanic - The Empress of Ireland exhibition. A few hundred people filled the Grand Hall at the Canadian Museum of History to see the event, sip some wine and chat.
Content Type(s): Blog

July 7, 2014 Museum Reconstruction - Part 3

By: Graham Iddon


Bank of canada - Night
Though naturally we are aware that the former Museum space is being gutted, the reality of seeing it empty is still pretty strange for most of us here. In the last blog of this series we showed you the empty cafeteria space that will become the new Museum, as well as some images of the old Museum as it was at the time: stuffed with odds and ends of exhibit cases, the occasional display still on the walls.
Content Type(s): Blog Subject(s): Planning

June 23, 2014 CENTimental Journey

By: Graham Iddon


GP-028-01
With all the blogging we’ve been doing for Voices from the Engraver, you’d think we had nothing else on our exhibition plate. We do, actually, and it’s called CENTimental Journey. This temporary exhibition, hosted at the Canadian Museum of History, walks you through more than 150 years of the Canadian 1 cent piece.
Content Type(s): Blog

June 16, 2014 Museum Reconstruction - Part 2

By: Graham Iddon


GP 017 03
We are coming up on a year since we closed the doors on the physical museum. During that year, we’ve worked very hard to make sure everybody knows that we are still a functioning museum and one that will be opening its doors again in a few years on a beautiful new space, with an expanded mission and mandate.
Content Type(s): Blog Subject(s): Planning

June 6, 2014 Becoming a Collector III

By: Graham Iddon


Money has a hard life and can get seriously deteriorated
For you as the steward of your collection, your aim is to preserve the items as best as you can by protecting them from further deterioration. The pros call this preservation.
Content Type(s): Blog

May 30, 2014 Going to an Opening

By: Louise-Anne Laroche


The Canadian Stamp Collection gallery, behind the Great Hall, Canadian Museum of History
Going to an opening is always exciting. You get to see the reaction of visitors and how other museums treat a given subject - in this case a subject related to our own.
Content Type(s): Blog