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

March 1, 2016 CMA Museum Enterprises Conference 2016

By: Nicole Gurski


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At the end of January, 2016 I had the pleasure of attending the Canadian Museums Association Museum Enterprises Conference in Toronto. This three-day event focused on visitor services in museums, art galleries and even aquariums and zoos.
Content Type(s): Blog

February 18, 2016 New Acquisitions

By: David Bergeron


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In late April of 2015, the National Currency Collection finally succeeded in acquiring a Spanish gold cob—famous in legends and tales of pirates and their buried treasures!
Content Type(s): Blog

February 1, 2016 The Gopher Hole Museum

By: Graham Iddon


The Gopher Hole Museum
Though packed with carefully prepared specimens, this is not a natural history museum. No, this is a social history museum housing 47 dioramas featuring 77 stuffed gophers.
Content Type(s): Blog

January 19, 2016 Emergency Response and Salvage Workshop

By: Patricia Measures


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Although we already have a disaster plan for the National Currency Collection, Ms. McCraith offered some great resource information and suggested ways to update and improve our plan.
Content Type(s): Blog

January 6, 2016 The Digitization Discussion Group

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Have you ever scanned or taken a digital picture of an old document or photo to make a safe copy or to send it to a friend or colleague? You probably have, which means you have taken on a small digitization project.
Content Type(s): Blog

December 17, 2015 What’s in Your Stocking?

By: Graham Iddon


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Every prop in the holiday drama generally has some sort of symbolic meaning—evergreen trees: life in the dead of winter, holly: Christ’s crown of thorns, the dreidel: Jewish resistance to oppression. Money, on the other hand, only seems to symbolize itself.
Content Type(s): Blog

November 30, 2015 Involving the Visitor

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A title for this exhibition eluded us well into the development process. By introducing IPOP theory, we had to take ourselves back to the very basics of what the exhibition is about, what its messages are.
Content Type(s): Blog

November 10, 2015 Money from Space

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Do you notice anything peculiar about this bank note? It’s blue; it’s denominated as 5-dollar; it has handsome portraits of Sir Wilfred Laurier on it…hold on a minute!
Content Type(s): Blog

October 29, 2015 Royal Canadian Numismatic Association

By: Raewyn Passmore


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Nova Scotia has long been a centre of trade that connected Europe, New England and the West Indies. Following the American Revolution, Halifax became the primary British port in North America and a hub of financial activity.
Content Type(s): Blog

October 15, 2015 Museums Inspiring Change

By: Caroline Roberts


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The theme for the 2015 American Alliance of Museums Annual Meeting was “The Social Value of Museums: Inspiring Change”. So it was fitting that it should be held in Atlanta, the birthplace of Martin Luther King Jr.
Content Type(s): Blog