ICOM KYOTO 2019

My speech at the general conference of ICOM in Kyoto,  3rd Sep. 2019

Building Connections vs. Building Collections? The Museum of the Future.

Dr. Matthias Henkel 

Conference sub-theme the paper supports
Redefining the role of Marketing and Public Relations at museums

 

Introduction

We are living in a changing world. Therefore museums must become contemporary. That means that museums must open themselves to the questions that are relevant for the current time.

The major changes are:

  • diversity
  • migration
  • digitisation
  • the loss of trustworthiness

These major changes are both a challenge and a great opportunity. Therefore we have to think about the Museum of the Future, about it’s skills, about it’s tasks, about it’s possibilities, about it’s USP.

 

The 6 goals – for the Museum of the Future

  • No longer giving answers – but rising questions
  • No longer delivering press releases – but curating informations
  • Not longer only collecting object – but gathering informations about relations
  • Not longer telling stories about the past – but building bridges between past, present and future
  • Not longer only diving into the world of the objects – but interconnecting the people with objects, contexts and content
  • Not longer using the www like a digital billboard – but curating the digitale space in an authentic way

Conclusion

  • ICOM itself should attach greater importance to the aspect of communication within the Code of Ethics.
  • And we – as communicators and marketers for museums – we have to work on our own skills and should try to build a communicative bridge between the marketing, the communication, the brand-building, the education and the curators – last but not least it is time to transform the museum of the future into a space that looks more like a forum for the societies than a warehouse of objects.

Such a paradigm shift represents an unbelievable opportunity to position ourselves as reliable, trustworthy institutions working in the service for societies.