The National Building Museum inspires curiosity about the world we design and build.
The National Building Museum educates, entertains, and engages people about the built environment and challenges them to advocate for a sustainable and equitable future.
Since it was founded in 1980, the National Building Museum has transformed the public’s understanding of the impact of architecture, engineering, landscape architecture, construction, planning, and design. Through exhibitions, educational programs, and special events, we welcome visitors of all ages to experience stories about the built world and its power to shape our lives, our communities, and our futures. The Museum resides in the historic Pension Building, which contains one of the most awe-inspiring spaces in the nation’s capital: a soaring, expansive Great Hall featuring eight colossal Corinthian columns. On the exterior, a 1,200-foot-long terra cotta frieze wraps the building.
How we approach our work and our goals:
WE EMBRACE INNOVATION AND ENCOURAGE CURIOSITY
- We commit to adapting, growing, and remaining relevant.
- We present exhibitions and programs that spark curiosity and discovery.
- We convene meaningful conversations about why the built world matters.
- We inspire our visitors to take an active role in shaping their environments.
We act with integrity
- We respect our colleagues and community members and value constructive feedback.
- We honor our commitments and hold ourselves accountable.
- We adhere to a high standard of excellence for our scholarship, exhibitions, and programs.
How we communicate:
WE OPERATE WITH CLARITY
- We communicate directly and honestly and operate with transparency.
- We work cohesively with a strong sense of direction toward well-defined goals.
- We clearly articulate roles and decision-making responsibilities to staff.
- We strive to follow achievable and delineated timelines, while acknowledging the need to be adaptable.
How we value our differences:
We pursue diversity
- We value diverse perspectives and backgrounds within our staff, board, advisors, partners, visitors, program participants, and donors.
- We endeavor to create accessible, inclusive environments by presenting content that is relevant to our community.
- We aim to tell honest stories with depth and nuance.
How we show up for our staff and the public:
We are mindful
- We are thoughtful in our interactions and show appreciation to our stakeholders.
- We are respectful of the time, efforts, and individual working styles of staff.
- We recognize outstanding contributions from staff and encourage opportunities for learning and growth.
- We strive to work together as a team and to be aware of how our behavior impacts others.
On December 12, 2020, the Museum celebrated its 40th anniversary. We invite you to watch this video created in honor of the occasion, and then to learn more about us through the various pages linked below.