Participants at the 2015 Michigan Museums Association conference, Michigan Museums 2025: Planning for Change, had the opportunity to share their ideas about what will change in museum organizations in the upcoming 10 years. Here are some of the responses:
I want to say they will be community spaces, that we will keep moving toward a new era. And I think that the up and coming generation of museum professionals is hopeful, energetic, and creative yet realistic. This could lead to spaces or open places with a deeper appreciation and acceptance of all the realms of U.S. culture. But honestly I think economic issues with continue to limit grown or even shutter smaller institutions over the next decade. I hope I am wrong.
I imagine a not-so-distant future in which an individual will go to a museum to get personally curated content, to answer personal questions, or seek experiences of uniquely personal interest.
I believe museums have always provided service to their communities, and will perhaps need to be increasingly service-oriented. With our population also increasingly interacting with others in highly personal ways, museums that allow unique approaches to service will remain relevant and valuable.
I also believe, and hope, museums will take an increasingly active role in curating information on a social scale to help up, as a society, understand ourselves better. And change for the better- what have we learned and how can that help prevent social ills?
I think it's possible that museums will have a presence- a station or interactive hub- in communities. (Not like a persnal computer at home; more like a community based multi-user crowd based interactive) or museums will be MORE about providing service and content delivery and LESS about displaying objects and drawing people in to see a curated exhibit determined by museum staff.
There will be more acceptance of "outsiders" using museums as platforms- such as folks like "Museum hack" and opening of collections information to all in multiple platforms- letting others curate their experiences.
Much will stay the same as now- the traditional things that have stood the test of time whether curatorial or programs will always have an audience too.
It will not be either/or it will be and/both.