KOLKATA: If you can’t visit the museum, let the museum come to you.

A survey by the Museums Association in the UK in 2005-06 revealed that 30% of adults visited museum or gallery websites. This has once again brought the need for digital empowerment in focus.

British Council, in collaboration with the National Council of Science Museums, Kolkata and the National Museum Institute, Delhi, recently organized training events on “how to create a digital engagement programme” in museums. The trainers — Carolyn Royston, head, digital media, Historical Royal Palaces, UK and Charlotte Sexton, former head of digital media, National Galleries, UK — completed their three-day programme in Kolkata on September 24. They held a similar workshop in Delhi that, according to them, would enable museums across the country hone their digital technology skills.

In Kolkata, the training was given to 46 delegates — independent curators, consultants, heritage practitioners and professionals associated with museums and galleries from all over the state. Royston and Secton led the sessions on subjects such as improving one’s website, how to write a better tweet, and an overview of channels of delivery like web, mobile and social media.

Talking to TOI, Sexton said, “Following the workshops on the strategic transformation of museums in 21st century held in Kolkata and Delhi in February, we conducted this workshop with museum professionals in Kolkata on how they can make the museum more interactive. In the February workshops, we discussed the need for training in digital methodology and engagements in Indian museums.”

British Council director Sujata Sen said, our work in the museum sector aims at supporting the Indian infrastructure in not only preserving the heritage, but also developing professional skills through providing direct links to UK expertise and knowledge.

Saxton said digital technologies have created new possibilities for museum audiences to engage more widely and deeply with cultural heritage, content and collections.

Courtesy: Times of India

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