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

February 5, 2018 Winterlude Weekends

By: Graham Iddon


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So we decided to provide some winter-themed indoor activities for families out and about during Winterlude who’d like to either warm up or lessen their disappointment at not being able to skate.
Content Type(s): Blog

January 30, 2018 Before the Erebus

By: Graham Iddon


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Now you might wonder just how a museum specializing in economics and currency expects to interpret the history of a legendary arctic explorer—through money, of course.
Content Type(s): Blog

January 17, 2018 While in Oxford…

By: Graham Iddon


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The meat of the traditional museum experience is found in Block B. Here you will see vintage radio sets, encrypting teletype machines, more Enigma machines and a working reproduction of the “Bombe.”
Content Type(s): Blog

January 3, 2018 Decoding E-Money Is Here

By: Graham Iddon


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Now that we are again back in our house, we’ve invited one of our wandering exhibitions home for a visit: Decoding E-Money.
Content Type(s): Blog

December 19, 2017 Building the Wall

By: Graham Iddon


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It’s basically an enormous digital tablet—the biggest one you’re likely to find anywhere in Canada.
Content Type(s): Blog

December 6, 2017 The Price of Victory

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We opened the Museum doors at noon on Saturday, November 11, and to my amazement, more than 70 visitors flooded our entrance in the first hour.
Content Type(s): Blog

November 8, 2017 Harry Potter Was Here

By: Graham Iddon


The set for Diagon Alley is smaller than it looks on film but is still an endless delight to visit in the flesh.
Imagine your kids nagging you to visit a great cathedral or whining, “Kevin’s family got to go on a walking tour of Oxford, why can’t we?” Oddly enough, this scenario may not as far fetched as it sounds.
Content Type(s): Blog

October 23, 2017 A Curator’s Favourite Task

By: David Bergeron


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I have several key responsibilities to meet the requirements of my job. None of them is more gratifying than conducting research about the incredible artifacts in the Bank’s collection.
Content Type(s): Blog

October 10, 2017 Vimy–Beyond the Battle

By: Graham Iddon


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I was taken aback to discover that it was not about the battle at all but, rather, was about commemoration…
Content Type(s): Blog

September 27, 2017 THE “BIG SIX”

By: Graham Iddon


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The necessity of creating and adopting these concepts becomes clear when one begins to get a sense of history’s downright frightening lack of objectivity.
Content Type(s): Blog