State, regional, and thematic museum associations are valuable resources for small museums. If you don’t know what resources are available to you, this is a good place to start! These associations may provide support systems, assist in the development and dissemination of professional standards, post job listings, offer skill-building and training workshops, offer advice on best practices, host conferences, and serve as a forum for collaboration between institutions. Don’t see a museum association you find valuable on the list? Please send us an email at email@example.com so we can include it!
The National Alliance of State Museum Associations (NASMA) acts as a support system for state museums collectively, and regional and state museum associations can help support member organizations.
There are currently six major regional museum associations serving their respective geographic areas.
- Association of Midwest Museums (AMM)
- Mid-Atlantic Association of Museums (MAAM)
- Mountain-Plains Museum Association (MPMA)
- New England Museum Association (NEMA)
- Southeastern Museums Conference (SEMC)
- Western Museums Association (WMA)
Most states also have their own museum association, so please check with yours for more resources and programs!
Beyond geographically-defined associations, there are also ones organized around thematic content because the best practices for sharing different content and their related collections can differ. The list below is not exhaustive but can provide a starting place:
Science, Medicine and Technology
- The Disability History Association
- Association of Higher Education and Disability
- Association on University Centers on Disabilities
- National Association of Environmental Professionals
- National Recreation and Park Association
- North American Association for Environmental Education
Culturally Specific Associations
- Association for the Study of African American Life and History
- Association of African American Museums
- National Association of Latino Arts and Culture
- Asian American Arts Alliance
- National Association of Tribal Historic Preservation Officers (NATHPO)
- Association of Tribal Archives, Libraries, and Museums (ATALM)