Beginnings: Public Outreach & Wikipedia
This has been my first week working in the Museum of Zoology, where I will spending the first part of my project. I am working in a discipline completely out of my comfort zone of archaeology, which leaves a lot of space for me to walk round the displays and storage spaces marvelling open-mouthed at the wealth of creatures represented by the collection. This morning I worked next to the skeleton of a crow, a dolphin’s skull and various things in jars… I wanted to be a marine biologist if I couldn’t be an archaeologist as a child, so this is heaven for me.. I will post some pictures next week.
This week, I have spent a lot of time looking at how to best manage the process of creating a digital engagement plan, and improving the museum’s Wikipedia page. Wikipedia is a key point of contact with academic knowledge for all kinds of people from all walks of life, and making sure that organisational Wikipedia pages are accurate, extensive and well-cited will bring a lot of interest to the museum in the long-term. It is a simple, low-cost, high impact method of public outreach. Wikipedia is the 6th most important source of traffic to the museum’s website, and means we have a global audience who want to find out more. Have a look at the improved page here, and see what you think: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cambridge_University_Museum_of_Zoology