Museum Tech: A Digital Festival for Museums - Museums Association

Museum Tech: A Digital Festival for Museums

17 April 2024, 1030-1630 (registration from 0930) 
Museum of London, London

Image: National Museums Scotland

The potential of digital tools – from social media platforms to AI software – to support museums’ work has never been greater. Increasingly, museums are embedding strategic approaches and recognising that digital products are just another tool to achieve their goals around social impact, audience engagement and collections development.  

Through a mix of provocations, case studies, panel discussions and demonstrations, our popular one-day conference returns for 2024 with a focus on the creative and innovative ways museums are using digital innovations. From digital learning to gamification, the event considers human-centred approaches to creating engaging content.  

Delegates also have the chance to hear more about how AI is shaping different areas of work, from collections management and operations to the visitor experience. And there will be discussions around the ethics of the sectors’ digital explorations.  

This event takes place in-person and includes demonstrations and exhibition stands.  

The day includes refreshments and a vegetarian/vegan lunch.  

The programme includes:

  • Practical advice on how understanding your online audiences can help you set digital objectives and feed into strategic decision making
  • The latest thinking from leaders within the Museums Computer Group
  • An in-depth panel discussion on the potential risks, opportunities and ethics for museum of AI technology
  • A case study of how funding can support digital developments
  • Understanding the environmental impact of museums’ digital activity – and the intersection with digital decolonisation work.

We aim to present a diverse range of speakers from across the UK and internationally at our one-day conferences. If you are interested in speaking at one of our events, or have a project you’d like to see explored, please tell us more by emailing the Events Team. 

Follow this event on X: #MuseumTech2024 


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Welcome from chair

Kelly Forbes, Digital Manager, Museums Galleries Scotland, opens the event

Can museums create equitable digital spaces and experiences for the planet and for audiences? 

Museums create digital spaces and experiences in many forms: websites, online exhibitions, collections portals and through social media. For many, this is their only experience of the museum.  However, the construction of these spaces come at a cost, environmentally and in terms of access.

This session is designed to act as a provocation. How can museums consider the environmental cost of their digital technologies? How can they build accessible digital spaces efficiently? How can museums reflect upon the technologies they choose to adopt? What might practice at the intersection of digital decolonisation and environmental sustainability look like?


Nicôle Meehan, Lecturer and Course Co-Director, Museum and Heritage Studies, University of St Andrews

Sponsor speaker slot from Substrakt: a new custom solution for museum group bookings

Over the past couple of years, Substrakt has worked in close collaboration with the team at Science Museum Group to deliver a new online, self-service solution for education group bookings. Since launching with the new platform, more than 12,000 group bookings have been made through the portal encompassing over half a million visitors, and nearly 80% of group bookings are now being made through the system.

Katie Moffat, Director of Sector Strategy, Substrakt, gives an overview of the platform and explains how you can join the R&D cohort of organisations that are helping to develop it further.

What does the rise of AI mean for museums?

Artificial intelligence is already having a major impact on how museums work. This interactive panel discussion will examine what we mean by AI and its different applications for the sector. The risks and ethical considerations of AI will also be discussed, alongside how AI strategies can support organisations.


Mathilde Pavis, Consultant in AI, IP and Ethics and author of the recent report Artificial Intelligence: a digital heritage leadership briefing

Linda Spurdle, Digital Development Manager, Birmingham Museums Trust

Trish Thomas, Head of Digital Innovation, Museum of London

Sponsor speaker slot from iDyam Solutions: you can have your cake and eat it!

At last, a truly integrated solution for retail, F&B, ticketing/admissions and finance. Microsoft offers a single solution for the entire supporter journey, that elusive single view of all transactions in one solution. With Rob Finley, Sales and Marketing Director, iDyam Solutions Ltd

Virtually Present and Engaged: a toolkit for a virtual museum

A joint presentation from the University of Bristol and the Arts and Humanities Research Council, exploring the Capability for Collections (CapCo) funded virtual museum project.


Jo Elsworth and Stephen Grey, the University of Bristol

Jo Dunster, Head of Infrastructure, AHRC

Sponsor speaker slot from Merlinsoft: managing the customer journey in the digital age

In this age of digital communication, it is easy to lose sight of the fact that our operations are still about people.  Owen Gleadall, Merlinsoft’s Online Ticketing & Admissions Solutions Specialist, addresses that issue and gives pointers as to how you can ensure that the “personal” approach still applies in all your dealings with customers.

Sponsor speaker slot with Altair Media: how to make your Google Grant work harder

David Harvey, Founder and Director, Altair Media, shares five things to focus on to maximise revenue and not waste your Google Grant activity.


Delegates are invited to enjoy a vegetarian/vegan lunch, with opportunities to meet other delegates and visit exhibitors tabletops, stands and demos.

Stands include:

  • iDyam Solutions will demonstrate the latest Microsoft Business Central and LS Retail Cloud SaaS solution for the museum and visitor attraction sector. A powerful, single solution for EPoS, ticketing and finance provided by one of the world’s top 10 EPoS solution providers, LS Retail.
  • Folks from Substrakt will be on hand to discuss anything relating to your digital work, in addition to talking about their new online, self-service solution for education group bookings. 
  • Merlinsoft will be demonstrating their new ‘Real-Time’ business management and reporting system.
  • Altair Media will be hand to offer advice and support on managing your Google Grant and ensuring you aren’t letting this free money go to waste.
  • Viewcopia will be demonstrating Curio, a free visitor app that utilises QR codes to provide instant and detailed information about a venue’s displays and exhibits, making customer visits more accessible and enjoyable.
  • RedEye will be on hand to discuss on they can help museums enhance their visitor experiences, drive more personalised communications, and optimise their marketing strategies through advanced marketing automation and AI driven analytics.
  • Megalearn, a small Swedish games studio making educational games, will share current work on a Roblox game called Mega Museum World – and chat to museums that want to participate.

The University of Bristol will also be demonstrating its Arts and Humanities Research Council funded virtual reality experience.

Welcome back

Kelly Forbes, Digital Manager, Museums Galleries Scotland

Cyber security for museums

Following a number of high-profile cyber-attacks, Jassim Happa, Lecturer in Information Security, Holloway University of London, shares some key security concepts and principles for heritage organisations. This talk will cover security policies and response plans.

Discovering digital audiences

Understanding your digital audiences and what content they want is key if museums want to create better digital experiences, grow followers and develop richer relationships.

Alyson Webb, Co-Founder, Frankly, Green + Webb, and Sam Potts, Senior Digital Manager, Royal Museums Greenwich, discuss how this approach has helped the museum develop action plans for content development.

The coalface of digital: the good, the bad and the ugly

In our final session of the day, join Museums Computer Group committee members in this interactive discussion examining some of the digital challenges and opportunities facing the sector. Our panel will share their insights as digital practitioners working at the forefront of digital strategy and innovation, discuss the role of MCG as a professional development body, and look at what the future might hold.


Georgina Brooke, Senior Content Strategist, One Further
Alec Ward, Consultant – Lead for Digital Content and Skills, The Audience Agency
Ed Bankes, Website Content Manager, Royal Academy
Livi Adu, e-curator
Graham Davies, Digital Experience Manager at Amgueddfa Cymru – Museum Wales

Event fees

Concessionary Member – £80
Member (Essential, Full, Institutional and Commercial members) – £105
Non-member – £160

Not a member? Join today and pay a discounted price for this event as well as receiving lots of other great benefits.

Important booking information

Please sign in and check the email address on your profile before booking. Your confirmation and joining instruction emails will go to the email address you use to log in to the website. 

If you create a new record with a different email address your membership will not be recognised and you will be charged the incorrect fee. You can check and change your email address before booking.


This event has the opportunity for businesses working in digital technologies to have a speaking slot and table top presence.

Click here to find out more or email Abigail.

Venue, access and sustainability information

More information about the venue, access and sustainability can be found here.

Event details
Date 17 April 2024
Time 1030-1630 (registration from 0930) 
Location Museum of London
150 London Wall



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