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Home   About   CFM Blog   Join AAM   Moving? New Job? Let AAM know. Nov. 23, 2011


Forecasting the future of accessibility: Please touch or don't touch?
Center for the Future of Museums    Share   Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Forecasting the Future of Museum Ethics, CFM's joint project with the Institute for Museum Ethics, is trying to determine which ethics issues will be paramount for museums 25 years from now. Our expert and public forecasters have identified accessibility as a key issue — and likely to change significantly, in some way, in the coming decades. But "accessibility," as used by the forecasters, encompasses at least four different things (from mere physical access to the balancing act between access and preservation). Has the "pendulum swung too far toward preservation, and is it in the process of swinging back?" (to quote one of our Oracles). What do you think? Read this week's blog post, then join the discussion.

Exercise and Science Headlines

World's most-visited museums
Travel+Leisure    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The Louvre Museum, ranked No. 1, benefits from broad name recognition and an enviable art collection, but it also has the good fortune of being located in France, which — along with the U.S. — drew the most international tourists in 2010, according to the World Tourism Organization. More than half of the 20 most-visited museums are located in Paris, D.C. or New York City. Yet there are also some surprises ... [and] wherever their home base, budget-conscious travelers flock to museums as an inexpensive or even free way to spend an afternoon. Museums, too, have struggled with the recession, and some increasingly rely on their permanent collections as fodder for special exhibitions. More

The Power of Animal Magnetism

A new national survey called “Releasing Wild Success” identifies important new findings about visitor motivations, desires, and behaviors related to animals in cultural attractions. MORE


Facts and figures about Thanksgiving
U.S. Census Bureau    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Everything you need to know about Thanksgiving, by the numbers. For example, did you know that Minnesota (site of the 2012 AAM Annual Meeting) is expected to produced 46.5 million turkeys this year (tops in the nation)? ♦ If you are still trying to decide what to bring your hosts for Thanksgiving, we recommend this decision-making chart. More

Trends in volunteerism: From candy striper to microvolunteer Nonprofit Charitable Orgs    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Good causes run on volunteer service. But volunteering, as many of us have known it, is changing, affected by the same social, cultural, economic and technological changes that are sweeping through every part of our lives. All the words that have been used comfortably in the volunteer field are now subject to connotations that we never thought of until recently. Keeping an open mind, keeping up with the trends and listening to supporters will help avoid vocabulary land mines. More

Texas A&M sociologist sees shift in immigration trends
Houston Chronicle    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Dudley Poston, a sociologist at Texas A&M University, suggests that Chinese immigrants may replace those from south of the border as the go-to workers for landscaping, construction, agriculture and other unskilled labor here. More


Nonprofits worry they'll take a hit in debt-reduction proposals
The Washington Post    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Some Washington area nonprofits and foundations expressed concerns that potential reductions in the charitable tax deduction, under consideration by Congress's deficit-reduction supercommittee last week, would have a chilling effect on contributions. So far proposals offered by both Democrats and Republicans have included caps on deductions for charitable giving as a way to cut $1.2 trillion in federal spending over the next decade. President Obama's proposal would limit tax write-offs for the wealthy to a 28 percent cap from 35 percent. More

Museum Quality Large Format Printing


Calling all boomers: Don't start more nonprofits
Chronicle of Philanthropy    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Philanthropy expert Mark Rosenman writes: "Many people probably rejoiced when they heard about a study released last week showing that 12 million baby boomers want to start their own nonprofit or socially oriented business over the next decade. But it's hard to imagine those findings cheered many people who understand the nonprofit world. More than a million nonprofit groups already exist, and plenty of for-profit ventures are dedicated in part to providing some social benefit. Adding millions more of such entities is not good for this nation." More

Thinking outside the bus
The New York Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Studies have shown that when seniors can no longer drive their cars, they cease participating in society: Visits to friends and family fall by 65 percent; shopping and eating trips fall by 59 percent. Conventional wisdom says that the way to create or improve public transit is to invest billions to engineer rails, trains and buses. This week's article looks at three small but intriguing transit initiatives that see transit as more than an engineering problem and try to build transit that meets the needs of its residents. ♦ Experiments in alternate forms of public transportation may be crucial to museum accessibility in the future, especially outside major urban centers. More

Central New York region to experience
unprecedented wealth transfer

Philanthropy News Digest    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The Central New York region will experience an unprecedented transfer of private wealth over the next decade, a new report commissioned by the Central New York Community Foundation finds. The report estimates the collective net worth of the five-county region to be more than $57 billion and estimates that 39 percent of that, or some $22 billion, will be transferred between generations over the next decade. Separate research [has] found that similar wealth transfer trends can be expected across New York State and the nation. Indeed, previous studies have estimated that $2.07 trillion may pass between generations by 2055 in New York State alone, while over the same span some $75 trillion could change hands nationally. More

Upgrading the home for 2111
Adelaide (Australia) Sunday Mail    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
According to a survey conducted by a national moving company, Australians think that by 2111, "most of them will live in apartments, with technology integrated into every room and homes will have three, possibly four generations living there." According to one futurist, this is actually a projection of current trends: "Over the decades ahead, we will see acceleration of the current trends towards medium and high-density housing in response to Australia's population growth, and particularly the growth in our urban population centers. Technological change will accelerate and we will see continued innovation to meet our lifestyle needs. The rooms that are filled with the most technology and functionality, such as the kitchens and living areas, will be the most transformed." More


New museum exhibit invites visitors to smell the moon, nuke an asteroid or colonize Mars
Scientific American    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
"Beyond Planet Earth," the slick new exhibit on space exploration at the American Museum of Natural History, is thoroughly modern. It has an augmented-reality iPhone app that produces hovering, three-dimensional animations. It has an interactive station where museumgoers can terraform a virtual Mars on a giant touch-screen to make the Red Planet habitable. It even has an interactive display that challenges visitors to divert a giant asteroid bearing down on Earth. More

Musée d'Orsay launches first-ever American friends association
France24    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Paris's Musée d'Orsay has launched its first-ever American friends association, a move that the renowned art museum hopes will bolster its international outreach. "We are seeking to facilitate access to American donors primarily, more than American collectors," says Guy Cogeval, the museum's president. "English-speaking visitors feel disenfranchised," says Seonaid McArthur, the executive director of American Friends of Musée d'Orsay. "We would like to create all sorts of activities in English, like visits hosted by English-speaking curators, workshops for children, etc. What we want to do is create a community." More

Sex Pistols' graffiti being studied by archaeologists is 'as important as the caves of Lascaux in southern France'
Daily Mail    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
One is a dazzling set of caveman drawings, found in France, from the Upper Paleolithic period thousands of years ago. The other is an array of doodles, found in London, from the early Punk period around 40 years ago. And both, it would seem, are equally worthy of scholastic debate. ♦ Soon to be a museum exhibit? More

Tools for the Future

Quietly, Google puts history online
The New York Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The Google Cultural Institute plans to make artifacts like the Dead Sea Scrolls — from museums, archives, universities and other collections around the world — accessible to any Internet user. "We're building services and tools that help people get culture online, help people preserve it online, promote it online and eventually even create it online," said Steve Crossan, director of the institute, which is based in Paris. ♦ This article quotes CFM Director Elizabeth Merritt. More

Meet the fabrics of the future
Threads Magazine    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Around the world, chemical engineers, biotechnologists, sustainability experts and textile designers have been creating fabrics that have qualities you couldn't make up. You can start with the expected — fireproof, soundproof, antibacterial — and move on to the science fiction — fabrics that are lighter than air, that carry heat from or to the body, or that generate energy from the wind or sunlight. More

The holographic greeter provides new incentives for retail consumers
Trend Hunter    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
VideoBriefThe holographic greeter may just usher in a brave new world for in-store consumers. Although it seemed like most of the new technology being introduced into the shopping world was steering consumers out of the store and online, this holographic greeter entices people right back into malls and other retail spaces. ♦ Frontline museum staff of the future? More

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Dispatches from the Future of Museums
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