What’s a Museum Technologist today?

Rich Cherry, USA , Robert Stein, USA

Just 15 years ago the job of a “museum technologist” was clear: s/he lead the team (if there was more than one) of IT professionals responsible for technology in the museum. Their remit from museum administrations was to ensure that the email worked, but they rarely if ever discussed the intricacies of digital workflow and online access with non-technical colleagues.

Today, the conversation has shifted. Instead of talking about bits and pipes, museum technologists in the field today are expected to possess a variety of skill sets. Increasingly those skills are less and less “technical” and more about fulfilling the content and mission objectives of the museum. The commoditization of technology has diversified the field and led to “museum technologists” making significant contributions outside of the purely technical mandate of their titles. In this plenary discussion, we will explore the changing role that technologists can play inside their organizations and how we can best pursue the results and impact that will change our museums and the field as a whole.


In an effort to better understand the makeup and profile of our field, Rob Stein and I have developed a short survey that attempts to get at a better understanding of the role you play in the larger field of museums.  We are critically interested in understanding the continuing evolution of technology in museums and the professional staff who innovate and maintain efforts in technology, media, and the web. Even if you DO NOT consider yourself a Museum Technologist, but work to create engaging digital content and experiences on behalf of the museum community — we are interested in your feedback about the role you play in museums.

Would you consider adding your voice to this session by taking a short survey? Please visit: http://bit.ly/10wrVEW