At the MFA, we take a 360-degree view of inclusion, from our visitors and audiences to our staff, leaders, and volunteers. To cultivate an inclusive organizational culture that fosters belonging, and acknowledges that the work is ongoing, the MFA convened a staff IDEA (inclusion, diversity, equity, access) task force as a starting point for programs and exploration at all levels of the Museum. Their vision statement is below:
“Leading with art, we envision moving forward as a museum that models an ecosystem and culture of empathy, kindness, curiosity, creativity, and respect. The MFA values our community of employees, volunteers, leaders, and audience, bringing a collective responsibility to embrace and leverage the beauty and strength that grows from our differences. We pledge to remain in a mode of inquiry and open and transparent dialogue about our challenges and successes.”
Department of Inclusion and Belonging
The department promotes a sense of belonging for all visitors by incorporating inclusion practice across departments as well as the MFA's commitment to a diverse, inclusive, equitable and accessible environment for staff, visitors, artists, and volunteers.
By offering training, sharing research, facilitating dialogue, and engaging outside expertise, the department aspires to develop a culturally competent, accessible, and inclusive MFA that reflects the city of Boston, and uplifts a diversity of perspectives and lived experiences.
Here are some recent Museum-wide programs implemented for staff.
Employee Resource Groups
The MFA currently has four Employee Resource Groups (ERG), with more in development:
- Parents and Caregivers
Employee Resource groups foster belonging in the workplace by providing employees opportunities to connect with each other around shared vision, values, identity and culture. Through ERGs, MFA staff create a network of support for each other, while making opportunities for professional development, connecting with neighboring communities through service, and helping to cultivate an inclusive organizational culture.
Rosa Rodriguez Williams, Senior Director of Belonging and Inclusion, facilitates a series of conversations with colleagues from across the MFA as they talk about their work, roles at the Museum, and career background. MFA Voices sessions give our audiences a behind-the-scenes look at Museum staff and operations.
Art and Exhibitions
The MFA strives to present exhibitions and programs that invite conversations on inclusion and belonging. A sample of recent projects is below; for a full list of current exhibitions see On View.
“The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (the MFA) is in Boston, Massachusetts. Founded in 1870, the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, stands on the historic homelands of the Massachusett people, a site which has long served as a place of meeting and exchange among different nations. As a museum, we acknowledge the long history of the land we occupy today and seek ways to make Indigenous narratives more prominent in our galleries and programming. We can all learn more about the Massachusett people, who continue to be the stewards of this land, by visiting massachusetttribe.org.”