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Harvard Museums of Science and Culture

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The mission of the Harvard Museums of Science and Culture (HMSC) is to foster curiosity and a spirit of discovery in visitors of all ages, enhancing public understanding of and appreciation for the natural world, science, and human cultures. HMSC works in concert with Harvard faculty, museum curators, and students, as well as with members of the extended Harvard community to provide interdisciplinary exhibitions, events and lectures, and educational programs for students, teachers, and the general public. HMSC will draw primarily upon the extensive collections of the member museums and upon the research of their faculty and curators.


The Harvard Museums of Science and Culture (HMSC) consortium was established on July 1, 2012 by the Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, Michael D. Smith, to develop a strong, coordinated public face for the six museums that are within the Faculty of Arts and Sciences at Harvard:

The Collection of Historical Scientific Instruments

Mineralogical and Geological Museum

Harvard Semitic Museum

Harvard University Herbaria

Museum of Comparative Zoology

Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology

It includes the Harvard Museum of Natural History, formed in 1998, which is the public face of the Mineralogical and Geological Museum, the Harvard University Herbaria and the Museum of Comparative Zoology.

HMSC has a Faculty Executive Board, which includes the directors of the member museums, senior administrators, faculty-at-large, and the HMSC Executive Director. Both the Executive Director and members of the Faculty Executive Board serve at the discretion of the Dean.

Upcoming Events at Harvard Museums of Science and Culture

Recent News

Wendel White Named 2021 Robert Gardner Fellow in Photography at Harvard's Peabody Museum

Read the complete announcement High-resolution images available on request (CAMBRIDGE, MA June 8, 2021) The Peabody Museum of Archaeology & Ethnology, Harvard University, is pleased to announce the selection of the 2021 Robert Gardner Fellow…

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HMSC Connects! Virtual Biking and Birding with a Mission

Join us for a live conversation with Scott V. Edwards, Professor in Harvard’s Department of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology and Curator of Ornithology in Harvard’s Museum of Comparative Zoology. Since June 6, Professor Edwards has…

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Harvard Museums of Science and Culture News - May 22, 2020

HMSC Connects! Podcast Listen to a new weekly podcast that goes behind the scenes of HMSC museums to talk to the scholars, researchers, collection keepers, exhibit designers and other fascinating individuals who keep the museums humming along and…

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COVID-19 News: Museums Closed to Public

We continue to monitor the evolving coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak and prioritize the safety of our visitors, staff, students and volunteers. In the interests of reducing the number of people on campus and slowing the opportunity for transmission,…

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Harvard Museums of Science and Culture News: January 26, 2019

Public Programs Anytime See All the Spring Public Programs Program Guide Check the new program guide to discover new exhibits and public programs at all four public Harvard Museums of Science & Culture. Peabody Museum highlights include a talk…

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Harvard Museums of Science and Culture News: December 21, 2018

Museum News See all exhibitions Holiday Hours The museum is open 361 days a year, so chances are good that we'll be open when you want to visit around the holidays. We're open 9:00–5:00 daily except Thanksgiving, December 24, December 25,…

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Harvard Museums of Science and Culture News: October 30, 2018

Public Programs Thursday, November 8, 6:00 pm Program details Ancient DNA and the New Science of the Human Past DNA research is revealing new insights into our lineage as modern humans and has become as important as archaeology, linguistics,…

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90 Years of Beetles: Rockefeller Collection Opens at Harvard in October

The Rockefeller Beetles Opens Saturday, October 20, 2018 at Harvard Museum of Natural History “The collection is superb, worldwide, and the biggest collection ever donated to Harvard University’s Museum of Comparative Zoology as far as…

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