My Connecting with Collections project will explore the forms and methods by which both the public and fellow museum professionals outside of the University of Cambridge Archaeology and Anthropology Museum and Museum of Zoology are engaged with the Museums through digital technologies, and the potential for future developments in the digital direction for public outreach. My project will assess how these communications could be improved, to benefit both members of the public as users and the museums.
This work will be undertaken though a series of evaluations of activities and collections, in-person interviews with staff, museum visitors and users of the MAA Object Identification Service, and online consultation with museum visitors and other museum professionals, through a series of surveys and email correspondence.
I hope that this research project will address the opportunities for the two museums to widen participation and engage new audiences on a more collaborative platform. This research will provide reliable data that can be used to improve user experience, engagement and participation, and embed usability and sustainability which can be applied across the University museums service.
This project is aligned very nicely with my PhD research which examines the use of Internet technologies in archaeological communities involved in public engagement and outreach work in the UK. I’m looking forward to getting started on the 4th February!