Friday, April 11, 2008

Museums and Web Day 2: Breakfast Roundtable Research Group

Sitting with Jen and various others at a roundtable discussing our research projects and issues arising.

  • How do you share results? Conferences, publishing, workshops
  • How to avoid research being done to you and not with you? Often the learning along the way of the project rather than the end product is the benefit. Need to keep the conversations going
  • Doing research makes you ask questions about the nature of the institution, people no longer so respectful of boundaries of the institution in a Web 2.0 world – how does the museum find its niche?.
  • At Australian Museum we thought very carefully about who to get involved – involve both staff we want to influences and those who are influential across the museum
  • Research engages with the messiness – recognise and celebrate that
  • Find an influential person within the institution to champion project – they need to be located at the highest levels
  • Research needs to be part of the institutional culture –social research methodologies is not always understood within the organisation
  • How to manage/keep going when people on the project move on? Need a central person that works across institutions for large [projects, build sustainability within the organisation for smaller projects
  • People doing research into new media/social media should also actively use the tools to communicate – but what happens when there are contentious issues that arise? This can be tricky – comes down to the nature of the relationship and putting out there lessons learned and what we'd do differently again next time
  • Ethics of research especially with on the fly research – how do you get informed consent when you are taking advantage of a situation and documenting it – can use a simple form, at Australian Museum we work with the Coalition of Knowledge Building Schools and ethics is taken care of that way. In our work with very young children we got them to give consent (as well as their parents) through using a simple form with smiley faces that they could colour in to show if they agreed.

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