This page contains links to projects that I have initiated or led since 2007. A list of of the key projects that I developed or managed at The Metropolitan Museum of Art is included in my CV.
Born of discussions sponsored by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation about the difficulties faced by cultural organizations of all sorts in applying technology to audience development activities, Project Audience is a collaboration of arts organizations and individuals developing shared tools and methods for reaching and engaging audiences, including the newly-launched Project Audience-Civic Connect platform for collecting, managing, and distributing cultural event data. I am Project Audience’s program director, and manage both strategic planning for the organization as well as its day-to-day activities.
Project Audience’s current research project, for which I serve a Principal Investigator, is developing methods for aggregating large-scale datasets of event information in real time, a process that will allow cultural organizations, philanthropists, cultural policymakers, urban planners, scholars, and patrons to better understand the full scale and scope of cultural production and inventory in a place. Our on-the-ground approach is distinctly different from other arts indicators projects that take a top-down approach to measuring cultural vitality.
Conservation Reel is a platform that encourages the creation and sharing of audio and video content of interest to conservators, students of conservation, museum professionals involved in collections care, and interested members of the general public. The project team believes that video can be an important tool for conservators in their daily practice as well as a tool for sharing scholarship across time zones and language borders. I developed the project plan and serve as the chair of its international advisory committee.
Museums and the Web, the museum professional association, is incubating a project to explore the problem of email archiving as it affects art museums. The identification, cataloguing, management and preservation of emails, particularly those containing the rich object-related information that has, until now, been archived in curatorial object files, is a matter not yet seriously addressed by the art museum community. Our project will bring together interested members of the museum and library communities, vendors, and computer scientists to work together to develop tools, strategies, and best practices to enable museums to preserve the rich knowledge contained in their email repositories.
The Steve project was a groundbreaking collaboration of museums looking at the potential of social tagging to help catalogue museum collections. One of the community’s earliest formal engagements with crowdsourcing, the project’s research, funded by three IMLS National Leadership Grants, helped to introduce the idea of social software to museum and library professionals. I was the project’s founder and project lead from 2007-11.
The Searching Museum Collections project was an informal collaboration of heritage professionals and researchers examining ways in which users query cultural collections online.
Enduring Publications was a research project and a series of workshops, developed in the days just before the internet blossomed, intended to surface the specific qualities of publications that are meaningful to readers over time. Designed principally for arts professionals, the workshop was structured to catalyze discussion about the specific elements of a publication and asked participants to consider whether their own chosen enduring publication was notable for its lucid prose, valuable reference materials (maps, citations, comparative illustrations), compelling narrative, or novel scholarship. A more recent version of the workshop uses the original workshop structure to examine the nature of electronic or online publications that may prove to be enduring. Watch this space for more news about the next phase of the project.