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The Jewish Museum Berlin, its library, its archive, the museum shop, and café will remain closed due to coronavirus restrictions.

Our Museum’s Organizational Structure and Administration

The Jewish Museum's Old Building in the evening sun, with three flags

The Jewish Museum Berlin is legally incorporated as a foundation regulated by public law. Consequently, its full official name is the Jewish Museum Berlin Foundation (in German: Stiftung Jüdisches Museum Berlin). The foundation’s mission is to study and present Jewish life in Berlin and Germany and to create a meeting place for the wider community.

As a foundation that is directly under federal government control, the museum is an independent legal entity subject to public law and part of the German federal government’s “indirect public administration”. As a result, unlike a private foundation, it is subject to the same rules as other publicly funded bodies. For example, public procurement law applies to all purchases made by the museum.


The Jewish Museum Berlin Foundation receives an annual grant from the funds of the Federal Government Commissioner for Cultural Affairs and the Media; this covers around three-quarters of its total budget. The remaining funds are raised primarily through donations and ticket sales. We value collaboration with other museums, foundations, research institutions, schools, and nonprofits.

Organizational Chart for the Jewish Museum Berlin

Last updated: January 2021

Download (PDF / 0.03 MB / in English / not accessible)

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History of the Museum: Ideas, Debates, Decisions, Inauguration (5)

Ideas, Debates, Decisions, Inauguration

Here is the four-part history of our origins and an accompanying timeline – from the forced closure of the first Jewish Museum in Berlin in 1938, and the original museum’s inspirational influence on our collecting principles, until the present day.

How We Came to Be

West Berlin, 1971: the idea emerged for a Jewish Museum to be connected to the Berlin Museum. Finally, in 1992, the cornerstone was laid for the building dedicated to this purpose and designed by Daniel Libeskind.

History of the Museum

Controversies and Contradictions

In the 1990s, the conflicts between advocates of an independent Jewish museum in Berlin and those who saw it as part of the Berlin Museum continually intensified.

History of the Museum

Political Decisions

The appointment of W. Michael Blumenthal as Museum Director and the transfer of the seat of government to Berlin eventually led to an independent Jewish Museum Berlin, which opened on 13 September 2001.

History of the Museum

Since the Museum Opened

With its exhibitions, publications, educational work, and diverse events calendar, our museum developed into a lively forum for reflecting on Jewish history and culture and, more broadly, on migration and social diversity in Germany.

History of the Museum
2001 until the present day


An overview in dates:
From the opening of the first Jewish Museum in Berlin in 1933 to the opening of our largest themed exhibition to date, Welcome to Jerusalem, and the planning of a new permanent exhibition.

History of the Museum