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Artefacts consortium

Artefacts is an association of historians of science, technology, engineering and medicine working in museums and academic institutions who use material culture in historical study and public displays.

Artefacts encourages new research and collaboration through annual meetings and publications.

Artefacts 2024

Artefacts is held annually in the autumn, hosted by a museum that specialises in the history of science, technology and medicine. 

This year's Artefacts conference will take place at the Science Museum Research Centre, London. The theme of the conference is “New Digital Practice for Science and Technology Collections".

Arfefacts will be held jointly with the final conference of the Museum's Congruence Engine digital collections-linking research project. The span of the entire joint conference is 13-16 October 2024.

Call for papers

Download the 2024 Call for papers of the joint Artefacts and Congruence Engine conferences 

The deadline for applications is Monday 15 July 2024.

Past meetings


Artefacts was founded by Deutsches Museum, Science Museum and Smithsonian in 1996. Since then, Artefacts has brought together academics and museum professionals from around the world to share research which focuses on material culture and object studies.


Publications are a core output of Artefacts meetings. Copies are distributed to libraries world-wide and can be accessed from the following links:

  • Volumes 11, 12 and 13 (Challenging Collections, Behind the Exhibit, and Understanding Use) are published by Smithsonian Institution Scholarly Press and can be downloaded free from the Smithsonian website.
  • Volume 8: Material Culture and Electronic Sound is available through Rowman and Littlefield.
  • Volumes 7, 9 and 10 (Illuminating Instruments, Analyzing Art and Aesthetics, and Objects in Motion: Globalizing Technology) are available from Random House.
  • Volumes 1 to 6 (Manifesting MedicineExposing ElectronicsTackling TransportPresenting PicturesMaterializing the Military, and Showcasing Space).