Innovation in the Art Museum Education Tradition International Symposium, Taipei Fine Arts Museum, Taiwan October 17-18 2009. I am attending this conference as a panellist. Here’s my notes from Day 1.  

Session 1: Innovative thinking in art museum education

  • Museums moved from focus on objects to focus on humans
  • Power of art is to touch people and to innovate – museums should facilitate this

How to cultivate innovation?

  • Contemporary society helps this as we are no longer a conservative world (does this means that people are more ready for and accepting of innovation as we are more open to new ideas?)
  • Leadership is critical
  • Recognise that everyone has potential and an innate creativity – need to tap into that
  • Keep an open mind and have an open relationship with staff
  • Project-based work is a good way to foster innovation
  • Openness to audience – recognise that they are the centre of everything
  • Create a supportive environment
  • See problems as opportunities

Session 2: New technology applications for teaching in today’s art museum

  • Web demands democratisation of knowledge and information
  • Telegraph was the internet of its age; freed community from constraints of transport and geography; as an example there were 236 billion messages sent in US in 1945
  • Aristotle said that man is by nature a social beast – remember that the web is a social space

What education resources are online was a question asked

I suggest you look at:
Museums and the Web Best of the web awards for education (this link is for 2009, look through the site for previous winners)
Cooper Hewitt Design Museum Educator Resource Center (Smithsonian)
MUSE awards - there is a catergory for teaching and outreach that may be useful)