Conference themes

A series of themed sessions coordinated by sector specialists
The Therapeutic Museum


Coordinated by Carol Rogers, executive director,education communities and visitors, National Museums Liverpool

Liverpool is leading the 2020 Decade of Health and Wellbeing national campaign.

This campaign articulates five ways to achieve wellbeing: Connect, Be Active, Do Something, Take Notice, and Keep Learning. The underlying message is that mental health is as important to our quality of life and life expectancy as physical health; feeling good is an important part of being healthy.

Great museums understand the needs of the communities they serve and develop effective partnerships that deliver high quality and innovative opportunities for social engagement.

How can museums produce the evidence required to build a sustained relationship with the health and social care sector? How can museums demonstrate that they can make a real and lasting difference to the quality of a person’s life? Can museums afford to do this type of work – or can they afford not to?

Tomorrow’s World


Coordinated by Iain Watson, director, Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums

This theme explores how museums can learn from what is happening now to plan successful futures not just over the next few years, but taking a lead from the futurologists to create a vision of museums our grandchildren and great grandchildren might enjoy.

We will explore technological developments and how they are changing the museum experience.

But these sessions are not just for geeks and hackers. We will also look at the skills that will be needed by the museum workforce of the future (human or robot) and how museum people will need to adapt.

Delegates will have a chance to hear what the public wants and how Museums 2020 has informed thinking. While classical historians might suggest we use the entrails of animals, we will use some rather more modern techniques to help us divine possible futures.

The Emotional Museum


Coordinated by David Fleming, director, National Museums Liverpool

Is your museum devoid of emotion?

Arguably the main reason that many museums worldwide are becoming more successful in attracting diverse audiences is that they have woken up to the fact that academic, sterile and dispassionate approaches to display are no longer acceptable to the public or funders.

Museums need to become places where emotion is encouraged, where stories are told and where a visceral response is preferable to an intellectual one – more like places of worship.

In this theme we will encourage delegates to explore how museums use emotion to connect with visitors. The sessions are neither neat nor self-contained – museum activity evokes a wide, sometimes contradictory, range of emotions.

Information and booking

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