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Timeliness

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This power point introduces the notive of rapid response to timely issues in museums. It is useful for museum staff, students and boards

This power point introduces the notive of rapid response to timely issues in museums. It is useful for museum staff, students and boards


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  • 1. TIMELINESS ELAINE HEUMANN GURIAN November 2003
  • 2. INTRODUCTION
    • This power point is an introduction to the issue of Timeliness in museums.
    • Written for a museum seminar in 2003 at the University of Victoria Continuing Studies.
    • Resulted in a publication *“Timeliness: A Discussion for Museums”, Davis, Joy, Gurian, Elaine Heumann, Koster, Emlyn, Curator , volume 46, number 4, October 2003, pp.353-361 .
    Timeliness Elaine Heumann Gurian
  • 3. USED IN OTHER FIELDS
    • As a unit of measure in delivery of service
      • Speed
      • Punctuality
    • As responsiveness to current topics
      • Assessment of current need
      • Speed of surfacing data and research
      • Public action and response to data
    Timeliness Elaine Heumann Gurian
  • 4. LEXICON
    • TIMELINESS
    • RELEVANCE
    • CURRENT
    • SALIENT
    • CONTEMPORARY
    • RESPONSIVENESS
    • FLEXIBILITY
    • USEFULNESS
    Timeliness Elaine Heumann Gurian
  • 5. TIMELINESS
    • fitness
    • appropriateness 
    • accommodation, accordance, adaptation, adequacy, admissibility, agreeableness, applicability, appositeness, aptitude, aptness, assimilation, auspiciousness, compatibility, competence, concurrency, congeniality, congruousness, consistency, consonance, convenience, correspondence, decency, decorum, eligibility, expediency, harmony, keeping, order, patness, pertinence, preparedness, propriety, qualification, readiness, relevancy, rightness, seasonableness, seemliness, suitability, timeliness 
    • suitability
    Timeliness Elaine Heumann Gurian
  • 6. RELEVANCE
    • Application, appositeness, germaneness, purpose, significance, importance, bearing, concern, consequence, drift, effect, emphasis, force, gist, gravity, import, influence, interest, materiality, moment, momentousness, notability, paramountcy, pertinence, point, precedence, preponderance, priority, purport, sense, seriousness, signification, standing, stress, substance, tenor, usefulness, value, weight,
    Timeliness Elaine Heumann Gurian
  • 7. CURRENT
    • contemporary 
    • accepted, accustomed, afoot, circulating, common knowledge, customary, existent, extant, faddy, fashionable, going around, hip, in, in circulation, in use, in vogue, instant, modern, now, ongoing, popular, present-day, prevailing, prevalent, rampant, rife, topical, trendy, up-to-date, widespread
    • affected, avant-garde, current, far out, futuristic, groovy, in, mannered, mod, ostentatious, pop, way out, with it
    Timeliness Elaine Heumann Gurian
  • 8. RESPONSIVE
    • accommodating, collaborative, collective, collegial, concerted, concurring, coordinated, in league, interdependent, joint, obliging, participating, reciprocal, shared, sociable, supportive, symbiotic, synergetic, team, united, useful
    Timeliness Elaine Heumann Gurian
  • 9. SALIENT
    • substantial  
    • obvious
    • conspicuous
    • main/core part
    • noticeable
    Timeliness Elaine Heumann Gurian
  • 10. USEFUL
    • serviceable
    • application
    • help
    • aim
    • status/class
    • appropriate
    Timeliness Elaine Heumann Gurian
  • 11. TIMELINESS AS IN: --
    • Calendar – Cycle and Unexpected Events
    • Performance Measure
    • Social Service
    • Topic/Content/Information
    • Context
    • Customer Service
    • Knowledge Management (More about)
    • Metaphor
    Timeliness Elaine Heumann Gurian
  • 12. AS A REFERENCE TO CALENDAR
    • Predictable and can be planned for.
    • i.e.:
    • Holiday special events
    • Birthdays of donors, institutions, etc.
    • Memorializing anniversaries
    Timeliness Elaine Heumann Gurian
  • 13. AS RAPID RESPONSE TO UNPREDICTABLE AND UNEXPECTED EVENTS
    • CATASTROPHES
    • EMERGENCIES
    • ACCIDENTS
    • WEATHER
    • VIP VISITS, DEATHS, ETC.
    • LOCAL, NATIONAL, INTERNATIONAL
    Timeliness Elaine Heumann Gurian
  • 14. AS PERFORMANCE MEASURE
    • Used in performance plans, in published accountability, etc.
    • Efficiency
    • Effectiveness
    • Speed of delivery
    Timeliness Elaine Heumann Gurian
  • 15. AS COMMUNITY & SOCIAL SERVICE Timeliness Elaine Heumann Gurian Offer aid to patrons in light of events. Offer counseling to staff in light of events Offer space for use in celebration, mourning, etc. Offer program space for other uses (i.e. blood drives, voter registration, etc.)
  • 16. AS CHOICE OF CONTENT
    • Current and emergency information
    • Current information as frames for existent exhibitions
    • Systems of rapidly changing exhibitions or parts of exhibitions
    Timeliness Elaine Heumann Gurian
  • 17. AS FORUM FOR CONTROVERSIAL TOPICS
    • Make places for meeting available
    • Programs that foster balanced debate
    • Seen as neutral site
    Timeliness Elaine Heumann Gurian
  • 18. AS CONTEXT
    • Allow and encourage place for inspiration and reflection
    • Create spaces for meditation
    • Use created environments
    • Background for performance, programs, debates
    Timeliness Elaine Heumann Gurian
  • 19. AS COLLECTIONS ACQUISITIONS
    • To acquire material recently produced
    • To document recent events
    • To readjust a collections focus in the light of contemporary concerns
    Timeliness Elaine Heumann Gurian
  • 20. AS CUSTOMER SERVICE
    • Hours
    • Admission charges
    • For all or for select audiences
    Timeliness Elaine Heumann Gurian
  • 21. AS KNOWLEDGE MANAGEMENT
    • Branching programs
    • Access to relevant materials & collections
    • Layering and “More About”
    • Co-creation and social networking to share authority and information.
    • Media and audience see museum as institution of expertise and call upon it for pronouncements
    Timeliness Elaine Heumann Gurian
  • 22. AS METAPHOR
    • Mirror/window for personal experience
    • Content transformed into analogy
    Timeliness Elaine Heumann Gurian
  • 23. Museums can:
    • Have established an internal ethos to want to respond.
    • Have pre-arranged systems in place that allow for responsiveness
    • Think that timeliness and reflection can exist side by side.
    • Have relationship with others who can provide information or systems.
    Timeliness Elaine Heumann Gurian
  • 24.
    • Systems that turn exhibitions around in short period of time
    • Have ongoing scan of current events as part of some job descriptions
    • Have a review process for topics that is based on timely response
    • Be considered a resource by community
    IN ORDER TO CREATE RAPIDLY CHANGING CONTENT, Museums need: Timeliness Elaine Heumann Gurian
  • 25. CONSIDERATIONS
    • Debate between reflection, synthesis, review and speed and flexibility.
    • Debate between perspective and immediacy
    • Debate between timely and faddishness
    • Establishment of institution as authority and / or forum
    Timeliness Elaine Heumann Gurian
  • 26. AUTHORITY
    • Who speaks for the museum?
    • Whose voice is in the exhibition?
    • What is the museum stand on debate and controversy?
    • Is the museum organized for shared and multiple perspectives?
    • Is this a “viewpoint” museum?
    Timeliness Elaine Heumann Gurian

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