Guidance: Trans-inclusive culture

Guidance: Trans-inclusive culture


This vital guidance sets out an ethical framework to support museums, galleries, archives and heritage organisations to realise their potential to create trans-inclusive spaces that foster dignity, equity and belonging. Developed by the University of Leicester's Research Centre for Museums and Galleries (RCMG).

In the context of growing uncertainty and anxiety surrounding trans-inclusive practice in the cultural sector, the University of Leicester’s Research Centre for Museums and Galleries (RCMG) – working with a team of legal scholars and experts in inclusion, equality and ethics – has developed comprehensive guidance on advancing trans inclusion for museums, galleries, archives and heritage organisations. The development of the guidance was funded via the Economic and Social Research Council. It was created by: Suzanne MacLeod, Richard Sandell, Sharon Cowan, E-J Scott, Cesare Cuzzola and Sarah Plumb.

This guidance helps heritage, arts and cultural organisations advance trans inclusion across all areas of their work. It sets out an ethical framework structured around four key questions:

  • How to develop trans-inclusive displays, events and public programming;
  • How to generate a trans-inclusive culture;
  • How to provide a warm welcome for trans visitors;
  • How to work with trans communities.

In response to each question, the framework provides clear principles and practical actions covering issues like:

  • embracing the challenge of thinking trans-inclusively across the whole organisation;
  • working to tackle harmful stereotypes;
  • using gender-inclusive language;
  • ensuring leadership commitment and accountability;
  • providing staff training delivered by trans organisations;
  • auditing facilities to maximise comfort and safety;
  • defending your trans-inclusive partnerships.

The guidance also responds to real-world scenarios that cultural organisations commonly face, offering ethically grounded advice. Questions here provide guidance on issues such as:

  • addressing harassment and exclusion;
  • managing conflicting belief systems;
  • protecting trans staff, partners and audiences;
  • justifying resource allocation;
  • terminology questions;
  • appropriately representing trans lives.

Go to guidance: Trans-inclusive culture (PDF)

Go to statement: There is plenty of room in museums for all of us (PDF)

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EDI Heritage Inclusivity Museums
Resource type: Guide/tools | Published: 2023