Mike Zimmerman: A key source that keeps on giving!

When I began formulating ideas for my Masters Thesis in Museum Communication, I wanted to capture my love of hands-on experiences and the powerful bonds these create between museums and their visitors. I was also interested in emerging engagement opportunities created by new web and social technologies. Combining these two concepts seemed like a worthy pursuit, so I set about finding sources.

After about 2 minutes of Googling, I encountered Nina Simon’s blog, Museum 2.0, and quickly encountered her book. While I was a bit disappointed that someone had already seen the brilliance of my idea (and written a book about it), it turns out both the blog and the book are fantastic! The blog is updated frequently and packed with examples and musings related to engagement and museums, and also acts as a forum for museum professionals to share information and comments. Taking advantage of the web in this way adds to the value of the blog, and provides another level of depth.
In keeping with the blog’s accessibility, the book is available to read online, with a PDF available for purchase. When reading online, readers have the ability to comment, and these often provide interesting jumping point for other conversations. This openness and accessibility continues throughout the book itself, which is full of examples and anecdotes from Simon’s own experience and from the broader museum community.
The Participatory Museum has been, and will continue to be a key source for my developing thesis. Why not take a look, it’s free!