Audience members at a conference

Museums+Tech 2019: Openness

Friday October 18 2019

Museums+Tech 2019: Openness

The British Library, London

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How can museums and other cultural organisations be more open in terms of their collections and processes, is openness always desirable, and what barriers might we have to overcome for truly open digital cultural heritage?

Museums and other cultural organisations have long been encouraged to be more open, in multiple senses of the word. From a technology point of view, this idea often centres on sharing collections data, producing open source software and tools, and developing open standards – all of which could have far-reaching implications for user engagement, future collaborations, and long-term preservation. Looking more broadly, the word ‘openness’ also has more infrastructural implications, as it relates to themes of transparency about decisions and processes, as well as inclusion of a wider visitor community. It’s also important to question this notion of openness – when should organisations be more open, and why might openness not always be desirable?

At this year’s conference, our speakers will tell you what openness means to them and organisations they work with, and openly share their reflections.


09:00 Registration opens

09:15 Muse Pros Get Coffee (sign up online)

10:00 Chair’s Welcome

10:05 Venue Welcome

10:10 ‘Is the Met open?’ – Loic Tallon

11:00 Session 1: Lightning Talks

Beyond the Limits of Physical Space: Opening up the National Archives through Narrative Podcasting

Hannah Hethmon, H. Hethmon Consulting

User Perception of 3D Digital Copies of Heritage Objects

Kira Zumkley, University College London

Give Away Your Platform: Twitter Takeovers at the Royal Institution

Sarah Dick, Royal Institution of Great Britain

Your Data, Our Data, Their Data

Joanna Salter and Ben Raithby, National Maritime Museum

Opening up the National Gallery’s Collection Information

Joseph Padfield and Rupert Shepherd, The National Gallery, and Rob Tice, Knowledge Integration

The Making African Connections Digital Archive: Open Beyond Open Access

James Baker, University of Sussex

11:55 Break

12:15 Session 2: Opening Collections to New Audiences

Cultural Heritage as a Mean of Social Inclusion: Work in Progress in the CultureLabs Project

Luigina Ciolfi, Danilo Giglitto and Eleanor Lockley, Sheffield Hallam University, and Abir Tobji and Katy Ashton, People’s History Museum

Openness, Innovation and the National Gallery

Emma McFarland and Lawrence Chiles, the National Gallery

The Nomad Project

Sophie Dixon, Mnemoscene Ltd and Abira Hussein, All Change

13:15 Lunch and AGM

All are welcome to attend our annual general meeting (AGM) during lunch.

14:15 Session 3: Open data, Wikimedia, and Reuse

Open by Default: Wikimedia and Open Access at the National Library of Wales

Jason Evans, The National Library of Wales

Wikidata as a Platform for Linked Open Data About Collections

Martin Poulter, University of Oxford

The impact of open – Case studies and Methodologies

James Morley, Freelance

15:15 Break

15:35 Session 4: Openness and Contemporary Issues

Looking for a New Strategic Approach: the Culture is Digital Digitisation Taskforce

Valerie Johnson, The National Archives

Why Isn’t Every Museum Like the Rijksmuseum?

Helen Casey, University of Hertfordshire

Finding the Nuance in Open Access During the Repatriation of Cultural Heritage

Andrea Wallace and Mathilde Pavis, University of Exeter

16:20 Discussion

16:45 Close

Accessibility info

Entrance and lifts

There is a stair from main lobby of the Knowledge Centre to floor 1- where the main event spaces are. Main event spaces can be reached using accessible lift next to the cloakroom.

Blue badge parking

There are seven parking bays for blue badge holders on the west side of the Library, immediately adjacent to our Ossulston Street entrance. This entrance is fully ramped and is located within approx. 100 metres of the doors to the main entrance. These bays are available on a first-come, first-served basis. There are also public metered bays in this area.

Accessible toilets

There are accessible toilets within both men’s and women’s toilets.

Borrow a wheelchair

We offer free hire of manual wheelchairs to visitors subject to availability from the Information Desk. There are nine manual wheelchairs available at the main entrance and these can be booked by contacting us on the phone number below at least 24 hours in advance. Please note that assistance cannot be provided in the use of these wheelchairs.

Contact us

If you have issues not addressed here and would like further help please contact us:

Telephone: 0330 333 1144
Textphone: 01937 546 434
Outside UK: +44 1937 546 060


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