Debating the curriculum: What should a programme in museum informatics and digital heritage look like today?

Ross Parry, University of Leicester, UK

What training do cultural technologists need? What should a curriculum in museum informatics and digital heritage look like? Do we have (should we have) a professional development framework for practitioners and scholars working in digital culture and museum media? Are the current training and learning opportunities available to museums’ professional digital community appropriate – if not, why not? Is there, going forward, a role for MOOCs? Should curricula be open? Must it be accredited? Is there value in training providers around the world collaborating more? What do employers’ need in the current (and next) generation of digital heritage professionals? Does the sector need technical skill or digital vision? Is this a volatile curriculum, or are there fundamental concepts that all those working with digital in the museum sector ought to know – if so, what are they? And who is best placed to deliver the digital curriculum?

At a time when the museum sector, higher education and the influence of digital are all at a point of acute change, this important and timely professional forum will debate the current state of training, professional development and learning provision for professionals working with museums and technology.

Leading up to the conference the MW discussion Forum (and other email lists and social media channels around the world) will be harnessed to start an international conversation, to identify and approach key training providers and employers, and collectively shape an agenda for the Baltimore session. Then, at MW14 the forum will, collectively, build a map of the current provision, then scrutinise its content – the aim to identify a set of principles (the ‘Baltimore Principles’) that will stand as a declaration of a common vision by the MW community of where digital heritage training can – and should – head.

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