Strategic Plan

Executive Summary

Beginning in 2020, the Yale University Art Gallery’s staff reflected together on our remarkable past and our exciting future. We set goals to strengthen our work over the next five years, guided by the values of commitment, inclusivity, integrity, innovation, and preservation.

The strategic plan that emerged reaffirms the Gallery’s mission to collect, preserve, study, and present art in all media and to serve as a center for teaching, learning, and scholarship for our campus, community, and national and international audiences. We seek to make the museum a place where creativity continuously enriches our lives, sparks curiosity and inspiration, and generates wonder, new ways of thinking, and mutual respect.

With the collaboration of students, faculty, alumni, University and community partners, and other supporters, we developed new measures to ensure that our museum is an environment where everyone—regardless of race, background, or beliefs—is treated with dignity and respect. Among the commitments laid out in this plan are to become more culturally responsible and relevant to an even broader audience, both in New Haven and beyond.

We have already made progress in many of these areas, including offering exhibitions that explore a wider array of global cultures and ideas; launching a new website and more robust online resources; using more accessible language on our search platforms and tours as well as in our labels; providing staff training in anti-racism; forging a greater number of partnerships and collaborations on campus and within our community; and creating further opportunities for local youth to work and learn with us. But we’ve only just begun.

Strategic Goals

1. Advance Knowledge about Art and the World

We will create stronger partnerships with our colleagues at Yale and with the regional and international community of scholars to promote teaching and research and to develop and disseminate knowledge about art and its relevance to the world. We will generate new experiences with art, strengthened by collaborations with artists and including those from diverse backgrounds, cultures, and expertise. We will expand access to our collections—in person, in print, and online—to foster curiosity and discovery.

2. Promote Diverse Voices and Inclusive Narratives

Over nearly 200 years, the Gallery has built a collection that ranges widely, if unevenly, across cultures, places, and periods; through it, we foster the study and understanding of human artistic achievement. We recognize the necessity of embracing a broad spectrum of perspectives and experiences to accurately interpret the breadth of global cultures and to make them accessible to our students and visitors. Internally, we will assess our history and current practices to better understand our past and to set a course of consequential change for the future. By 2026 we commit to ensuring that Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, Accessibility, and Belonging (DEIA/B) are reflected in our hiring, outreach, acquisition, exhibition, programming, and business practices.

3. Build Sustainability and Resilience

By 2026 the Gallery will build a firmer foundation to ensure long-term financial sustainability. We will slow expenses and increase productivity by consolidating the collections at the Gallery and the Collection Studies Center at Yale West Campus, with our online environment serving as our third, fully integrated location. Based on the latest research, we will revise our practices to reflect our concern for the long-term preservation of art and the planet. Only by seamlessly working together will we achieve our shared goals. Thus, we will improve structures and systems to foster a culture of collaboration, professional development, and effectiveness—one that attracts and retains the most talented people in the field.

Related Content

  • Director’s Letter

    Read a message from Stephanie Wiles, the Henry J. Heinz II Director.

  • Diversity and Inclusion

    Learn about our commitment to diversity and inclusion.

  • Visit

    The Gallery is free and open to the public from Tuesday through Sunday.

  • Objects displayed in tall, glass cases at the Wurtele Study Center.

    Wurtele Study Center

    A state-of-the-art educational and research facility that offers access to over 42,000 objects in the collection.