The cross-Atlantic agreement between the University of Glasgow and the Smithsonian Institution will continue the unparalleled access to historic collections in Scotland and the USA taught by leading academics, who are also crossing the Atlantic in both directions to purse major research collaborations.

 The new agreement covers everything from antiquities to astrophysics, and from preservation of natural ecosystems to the protection of culture heritage including both institutions’ Whistler collections and worldwide research in traditional Pacific barkcloth.

The Smithsonian, in Washington DC, is the largest museum, education and research organisation in the world, with 19 museums, nine research centres, 154 million objects and an annual budget of $1.5bn (for fiscal year 2018).

The institutions signed the agreement yesterday at a special ceremony held in Washington DC. The strategic partnership agreement builds upon a memorandum of understanding signed between the two institutions in 2016. 

The new agreement will also extend staff research collaborations and exchanges as well as student internships and work placements. The Smithsonian is the University of Glasgow’s fourth strategic partnership and joins America’s Columbia University, Canada’s McGill University and China’s Nankai University.

Professor Sir Anton Muscatelli said: “The University of Glasgow is proud of our reputation as a leading place of learning, teaching and research in Scotland. But at the same time we have always had an international outlook. This agreement will significantly develop and enhance our close working partnership with colleagues at the Smithsonian Institution as well as strengthening our bonds of friendship.”

 Smithsonian Provost Dr. John Davis said: “This strategic partnership between the Smithsonian and the University of Glasgow builds on the strong bonds these two great institutions already share. We look forward to many more ‌years of collaborating and exchanging ideas on the important issues facing our world today.”



University of Glasgow

Smithsonian Institution