Making Space for Digital Initiatives: New Era Infrastructure in Cultural Institutions

Large touchscreen tables are part of the interactive digital experience at Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum Professionals in cultural institutions have grappled with the question of how best to approach digital and emerging media for decades. The longevity of annual conferences such as Museums and the Web (first meeting in 1997) and the Museum and Computer Network (first meeting in 1979) attests to the importance the cultural sector assigns to this question. However, the rapid pace at which emerging technologies develop is often understood as being at odds with the considerable organizational inertia of these institutions. Add to that the myriad other demands (collection, preservation

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