Report Advises Museums on How to Be More Inclusive

Gender neutral bathroom signs at the Whitney (photo by Ben Sutton for Hyperallergic) (click to enlarge)

The Center for the Future of Museums (CFM), part of the American Alliance of Museums, has released  the 2016 edition of its annual report TrendsWatch. This year’s report has an overarching theme. The five trends deal with primarily with perceptions of self. Museums are urged to shape and augment the experiences of visitors to better cater to notions of identity.

The report suggests a move “beyond the realm of assistive technology, designed for people with disabilities, into augmentive technology that expands the boundaries of basic human capabilities.”

It also notes the possibilities associated with moving away from representing cultures in exhibitions to sending signals about cultures through design characteristics such as signage.

The report also encourages museums to contemplate how they may affect visitors’ well-being. Museums are urged to view themselves not just as educational institutions, but as opporutnities for improving people’s level of happiness.

Report Advises Museums on How to Be More Inclusive and Maximize Happiness