Spectrum in action – CT conference 2018

SS Great BritainOne year on from the launch of Spectrum 5.0, our 2018 conference explores how the latest version is being put into practice.

Join us at Bristol’s SS Great Britain on 13 September to explore Spectrum in action. An excellent line-up of speakers will be considering how Spectrum 5.0 has been used by museums, plus there will be opportunities to network, and a chance to explore the magnificent ship and new Being Brunel museum. Each delegate will get a free copy of Banish the backlog, our new practical guide that we’ll be launching at the conference. Book your tickets here.

There will also be a chance to catch up with museum colleagues on 12 September over a pre-conference dinner at Riverstation, located on Bristol’s iconic harbourside. Book your tickets for dinner here, with a choice of two or three courses.

Outline programme

Here are the speakers and sessions confirmed so far. There will also be an optional Q&A panel session on choosing collections software, the launch of our Banish the backlog book, and the results of the 2018 Collections Trust Award. We will add further programme details over the coming weeks.

Keynote – Laura Pye: What next for collections?
The recent Museums Association taskforce report argued that ‘museums need to decide what their priorities are and review the impact of collections development policy and practice over the last decade to make collections more sustainable.’ In the conference keynote, Laura Pye considers the gap between collections management theory and practice and sets out the challenges as she sees them. Laura Pye, Director of National Museums Liverpool, was until recently Head of Culture for Bristol City Council, and chaired the taskforce convened by the MA in 2016.

Research update – Sharon Heal: Collections 2030
The Museums Association is conducting groundbreaking new research into the future use and management of our collections. Sharon Heal, the MA’s Director, will outline the key themes emerging from this wide-ranging study including radical new approaches to dynamic collections management and use. Sharon Heal has been the Director of the Museums Association since 2014, having previously edited the Museums Journal.

Scott Furlong: the revised Museum Accreditation Scheme
Later this year Arts Council England will launch the revised Museum Accreditation Scheme. Scott Furlong, ACE’s Director of Collections and Cultural Property, will explain how the Scheme is being refreshed and how it will dovetail with Spectrum 5.0.

Case study – Kate Diston: Duplicating dodos – implementing reproduction standards at Oxford University Museum of Natural History
Kate Diston is Head of Print and Digital Collections at Oxford’s Museum of Natural History.

Case studies on how museums are using other new and revised Spectrum procedures

  • Documentation planning: Jo Moore, Curator and Collections Coordinator, Wheal Martyn
  • Inventory: Meg McKavanagh, Easton Pearson Archive Coordinator, Museum of Brisbane
  • Collections review:  Kathleen Lawther, Collections Curator, Hastings Museum and Art Gallery

Kevin Gosling: What’s the use of Use of collections?
It seems few readers have made it to the revised Use of collections procedure nestling towards the end of Spectrum 5.0. Yet, as museums almost everywhere struggle to capture and manage knowledge about their collections from a wide range of sources, Kevin Gosling argues that the innovations in this revised procedure might prove the most useful in the long run. Kevin Gosling has been Chief Executive of Collections Trust since 2015, and co-edited Spectrum 5.0 together with Gordon McKenna.

Photo: David Norton, courtesy of SS Great Britain Trust.