Vox pop | Can touring exhibitions ever be sustainable? - Museums Association

Vox pop | Can touring exhibitions ever be sustainable?

Two museum professionals respond to our question
Museums for Climate Justice
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Alison Morton
Head Of Exhibitions, Sheffield Museums

“Yes, if the long-term plan relies on sharing resources and not additional funding. Over the years, museums and galleries have evolved differently, soresources and staffing structures vary across the sector. An organisation may have a permanent technical team, another a van, while others might have in-house conservators and graphic designers that they can use. Put together, these differences can provide everything a project needs to succeed with minimal cash input. This, coupled with a degree of professionalism and mutual trust that waives additional costs such as couriers, can further reduce the costs of lending and touring enabling touring exhibitions to be affordable for all in the sector.”

George Young
Head of exhibitions and collections at Manchester Museum

“Zero emissions for exhibitions in museums and galleries are not currently possible, but that only makes the task of ensuring exhibitions are as sustainable as they can be more urgent. It needs everything from ingenious technicians getting involved in reducing, reusing and recycling to creative programmers questioning who is served by a rapid turnover of exhibitions. Manchester Museum is establishing short- and long-term goals to limit our own emissions and extend our influence as the world’s first carbon literate museum. We are doing this across the sector through our Roots and Branches collaboration with Museum Development North West. We can’t yet get to zero, but we can all be striving to get as close as we can.”

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