With over 900 members globally, the IWM War and Conflict Subject Specialist Network builds capacity, connections and confidence in the cultural heritage sector.

Network members look at a range of themes and subjects within the period of the First World War to the present day.

Our aim is to share and develop knowledge and skills amongst many diverse organisations and individuals across the UK and further afield.

Join for free today
Membership to the network is free and available for anyone working on not-for-profit activity relating to conflict since 1914

Benefits for Network Members

Neighbours chatting as normal despite the restrictions of their gas masks during a practice drill in Southend.

More Information

  • A teacher and her pupils enjoy a lesson in a basement at Greek Road School in South East London in 1941.
    © IWM (D 3161)

    Connecting, Sharing, Learning project

    Between July 2020 and June 2021, IWM’s War and Conflict Subject Specialist Network (WCSSN) led a project called Connecting, sharing, learning: sustaining relationships between collections and older communities during the COVID-19 pandemic.

    Find out more

  • An abstract aerial view of a bombing raid on a city.
    © IWM Art.IWM ART LD 4526 Battle of Germany by Paul Nash

    IWM 14-18 NOW Legacy Fund

    A national partnership programme of 22 artist commissions inspired by the heritage of conflict. Led by Imperial War Museums, the IWM 14-18 NOW Legacy Fund was created following the success of 14-18 NOW, the official UK arts programme for the First World War centenary. A total of £2.5 million has been made available to artists and cultural organisations across the UK, including several SSN members. 

    Find out more.

  • British and US navy crews shaking hands between ships.
    © IWM (A 730)

    About the SSN

    Read about what the SSN is, how we work and what we offer to members.

    Members Agreement

    Terms and Conditions of membership

    Frequently Asked Questions


Latest Blog Posts

  • 28/11/23 Partnerships
    Projection of First World War soldiers, November 2022
    Guest Author: Professor Helen Brooks, University of Kent
    Reflections on Walking with Ghosts

    This month, Walking with Ghosts returned to Folkestone Harbour Arm Station. The immersive outdoor artwork had a powerful impact on audiences last year when it premiered at the historic station where so many crossed to and from the battlefields during the First World War. In this blog post, Professor Helen Brooks from University of Kent reflects on the impact of this powerful commission, part of the IWM 14-18 NOW Legacy Fund programme.

  • 28/11/23 Partnerships
    A wall of black and white images of Second World War pilots
    Guest Author: Orla Kennelly, American Library
    Celebrating 60 years of the American Library

    2023 marks 60 years since the first Memorial Library dedicated to the 2nd Air Division of the 8TH Air Force of the United States Army Forces (USAAF) was opened in Norwich, Norfolk. Today the library retains the identity first envisaged for it – that of a living memorial, a place where there is a shrine to the dead and a daily exchange of American thoughts and ideals. In this blog post, Orla Kennelly of the American Library shares details on this unique memorial and library.

  • 24/10/23 Partnerships
    Dancers performing on stage
    Guest author: Ruth Imeson, Inspire: Culture, Learning and Libraries
    The Mother of Tension: An IWM 14-18 NOW Legacy Fund commission

    Inspired by collections at Nottinghamshire Archives and Imperial War Museum, The Mother of Tension featured a group of talented young dancers from across the Midlands in a ground-breaking new Hip Hop dance theatre performance exploring themes of conflict through lived experiences. In this guest post, Ruth Imeson from Inspire: Culture, Learning and Libraries shares details of the historical collections that shaped the performance.

  • 24/10/23 Partnerships
     image: stylised depictions of two lions, one based on the coat of arms of Great Britain, the other based on the coat of arm of Ceylon. On the left, the British lion stand before a Union Flag; and on the right, the Ceylon lion wears a headdress, holds a knife in its paw, and stands before a Ceylon flag.
    Guest authors: Nihara De Alwis and Lara Wijesuriya
    Framing Partnership by moving ‘Forward Together’: Ceylon in British Propaganda during the Second World War

    Britain’s entry into the Second World War in 1939 affected not only the island nation but also the many areas of the globe that formed its empire. In order to urge all her colonial subjects to contribute towards the war effort, colonial authorities used propaganda in the form of posters, films, and more. In this guest blog post, researchers Nihara De Alwis and Lara Wijesuriya share how posters were adapted and framed according to the colony and area in which they were to be used, to sell the ‘product’ of empire most successfully.

  • 15/09/23 Partnerships
    Survivors and their descendants at the Nowogrudek memorial, 1993
    80 years on: the escape of Jack Kagan (BEM) during the Holocaust

    On 26 September 1943, 250 Jewish prisoners escaped from a tunnel that they had dug to escape the Novogrudok Ghetto and Labour Camp in Nazi-occupied Poland. 170 survivors of the escape went on to fight with Jewish partisans in the forests, made famous in the film Defiance. In this blog post, we share the story of one of the men who escaped that day - the late Jack Kagan BEM (born Idel Kagan in 1929).

  • 01/09/23 Partnerships
    USAF Bunker at Alconbury with items from the former runway
    Guest author: Dr Peter Robinson, Leeds Beckett University
    Learning to Remember The Cold War

    In recent years, there has been a remarkable surge in interest surrounding the preservation and exploration of Cold War heritage in the UK, the US, and Western Europe. Dr Peter Robinson of Leeds Beckett University shares details of a project to explore the curatorship and memory of Cold War heritage in both Eastern and Western Europe, focusing on visitor engagement and experience.

  • 29/08/23 Partnerships
    Historical Unit of Southern California members (Shelby second from left) representing the American Women's Army Corps
    Guest author: Shelby Anderson
    Historical Reenactment and Living History: a guide for teachers

    Shelby Anderson is a 5th year social science teacher at Laguna Beach High School in California, USA, teaching U.S. History and Human Geography. Additionally, she serves as the Educational Outreach Coordinator Board of Directors for the Historical Unit of Southern California and represents the Women’s Army Corps when participating in living history activities. In this post, Shelby shares some of her advice on bringing history to life through engaging reenactors.

  • 22/08/23 Partnerships
    Advert for The Gold Kimono serial, 1930
    Guest author: Dr Alan Burton, Brunel University
    Being Vigilant: Fighting the Red Shadow (1932), Spy Writers and Confronting the ‘Red Menace’ in Inter-War Britain

    Dr Alan Burton shares some of his research as part of the AHRC-funded 'Writers in Intelligence' project. The project focuses on writers of spy fiction who also served in the real world of espionage, and this post focuses on the inter-war years in Britain.

  • 04/08/23 Partnerships
    War Memorial at Athens War Museum, Taken by Author with Museum’s Permission in July 2023
    Guest author: Konstantina Vardavoulia, IWM War Memorials Register Volunteer
    Help From Afar: The Greek Contribution in the Korean War and How it Has Been Remembered

    July 2023 marked 70 years since the signing of the Korean Armistice Agreement on 27 July 1953, an armistice which ended direct hostilities between North Korea and South Korea. In this post, IWM War Memorials Register Volunteer Konstantina Vardavoulia reflects on the Greek involvement in the conflict, and how it is remembered today.