A Strategic Vision for CHF

Strategic Plan

Photo by Conrad Erb.

Our Mission

To foster dialogue on science and technology in society.

CHF’s staff and fellows study the past in order to understand the present and inform the future. We focus on the sciences and technologies of matter and materials and their effect on our modern world, in territory ranging from the physical sciences and industries, through the chemical sciences and engineering, to the life sciences and technologies. 

We collect, preserve, and exhibit historical artifacts. We engage communities of scientists and engineers. We tell the stories of the people behind breakthroughs and innovations.

Our Future

CHF’s current strategic plan highlights crucial areas of focus for an important transition period. Building on more than 30 years of tremendous growth and great success, we aim now to further increase our impact and expand the reach of our activities.

As we look to the future we are confident that CHF will be respected internationally as the leading center for collecting, studying, and communicating stories of science and technology shaping material culture and innovation. 

Our areas of strategic focus are summarized below. The full strategic plan is available for download here.

Leadership of Thought

To gain authority as thought leaders, we will enhance CHF’s reputation as a research institute, build our capacity to translate our research for diverse audiences, increase our visibility beyond the academic community, and pursue collaborations that take our work beyond Philadelphia.

Collecting and Processing

To ensure the continuing relevance of our vast and rapidly growing collections, we will build and sustain a state-of-the-art digital presence, including online digital collections with value-added digital content, and further integrate CHF’s research activities with its collections and collecting activities.

Public Engagement

To promote science and technology as crucial cultural and social forces, we will establish major cross-functional projects that communicate the history of matter and materials, upgrade traditional and digital media to reach multiple audiences, and fully realize the ability of our museum to share CHF’s collections.

International Relevance and Presence

To build our reputation on a global scale, we will strive to make CHF more visible to international audiences, involve communities outside the United States in CHF activities, and launch CHF branches linked to institutions outside the United States.

Institutional Advancement

To secure substantial and continued support from individuals, foundations, and corporations worldwide, we will define and connect with target support groups, enhance staff capabilities and tools, and lay the groundwork for our next comprehensive campaign.


Read CHF's Strategic Plan

Our full strategic plan, adopted January 24, 2014, is available for download here

Please join us in exploring CHF’s future, and send us your feedback, ideas, and support.

Annual Report

Annual Report
Take a look back at a year of preservation, research, and outreach in CHF’s annual report to supporters.

Support CHF

Help us preserve and share the history of chemistry and related sciences. Make a tax-deductible tax-deductible gift online.