Implementation of eGuides with cross-border shared.. (BalticMuseums 2.0 Pl..)
Implementation of eGuides with cross-border shared content for South Baltic Oceanographic Museums
(BalticMuseums 2.0 Plus)
Start date: Nov 30, 2010,
End date: Apr 29, 2015
Oceanographic museums are major attractions in the South Baltic region preserving and presenting the natural and cultural maritime heritage to domestic and international visitors. The exposition of that content is the very heart of the museums’ competence and uniqueness. In the South Baltic region, two scientific partners and four museums (including one partner from Kaliningrad) have cleared the way to share this content by building up a trustful personal relationship derived from the present project BalticMuseums 2.0. In that project it was found, that there is a broad overlapping of the museums’ thematic profiles.The creation of content describing the exhibits to the visitors requires extensive staff and economic capacities, especially preparing it in various languages. A systematic and efficient way for sharing different content formats is needed, at the same time being able to easily present it to the visitors. As part of the current project BalticMuseums 2.0 a prototype of a visitor guidance system is developed. The so far conducted research and testing has revealed the great potential of multi-media visitor guidance systems (eGuides) to enable the museums to share their content easily. eGuides are devices delivering audio, photo, text and other material to the visitor in an attractive way while walking through the museum. With e.g. RFID technology different objects are allocated and the content saved for specific Points of Interest is displayed to the visitor. By using similar eGuide devices in all museums, synergies in content development can be exploited, technical experience be shared and purchasing power used. Implementing a system to efficiently share content and present it to visitors is an investment needed to fill the missing technological link between the museums.In this new project BalticMuseums 2.0 Plus the partners want to join forces to realise this challenging content sharing system by eGuide. The universities will deliver the technological and economic expertise, while the museums contribute with the practical experience.All partners are involved in almost all activities to ensure consensus while working on this precious centre of the museums professional competence. In component 3 a highlight tour by eGuide per museum is prepared in English, the native language and at least one additional language from the programme area. The technical foundations for the eGuide system are realised in component 4, while in component 5 the developments are taken under a profound review leading to long-term co-operation agreements.The partnership for eGuides will affect the daily work in the museums thus deeply anchoring the cross-border cooperation in the organisation. To manifest the mutual partnerships and determine the ways of working with this crucial part of the museums’ expertise formal agreements will be signed by the partners. They will be the foundation for a sustainable network for cross-border prepared eGuides in museums. Achievements: The German Oceanographic Museum, the NMFRI Gdynia Aquarium and the Lithuanian Sea Museum have all introduced multi-lingual eGuides in their museums. They have conducted joint acceptance tests and compared their results. Changes based on findings of these tests have been made regarding the content. The project team has developed a data management system, to share content for the eGuides e.g. texts, photos, videos, audios. In the process of introducing the electronic guides, the team has strongly profited from sharing experiences both for hardware decisions, strategies for content development and concepts for services and handling of the eGuides in the museum. The Lithuanian Sea Museum was the first museum in Lithuania with an eGuide system in use. This eGuide works in six different languages. The NMFRI Gdynia Aquarium has especially gathered experiences in developing eGuide concepts for children. These experiences have been disseminated in various meetings and presentations, among others in eGuide labs inviting regional stakeholders. After starting with the eGuide at its first branch, the German Oceanographic Museum is about to introduce the eGuide at its second branch, involving this time the national park next to the museum to also deliver content as an external source. Another outstanding achievement is the project presentation in the European Parliament. This lunch briefing was organised in cooperation with the Brussels office of the German Marine Research Consortium. MEP Radvilė Morkūnaitė-Mikulėnienė from Lithuania was host of the briefing, that attracted over thirty representatives from the European parliament and different European organisations in Brussels. The online information platform, the project website and the newsletter are constantly used to publish news. Specific press releases have been issued to inform about the project and its results. The project has carried out an online marketing campaign in the search engine Google and in Facebook. The results and findings are documented and shared within the community. Furthermore billboard campaigns have been put in place in Lithuania (large billboards at the motorway) and in Gdynia (PL) presenting a unique exhibition at the central railway station of Gdansk and Gdynia. Thanks to QR codes travellers were able to access a part of the eGuide content: to see the videos of the presented animals and listen to the speakers telling stories about these organisms on the travellers’ mobile phone. Advisory board meetings in all partner countries ensured the involvement of stakeholders such as other museums or tourism experts from the region. The project partners have enlarged their network by working with the Associated Organisations as well as the new Swedish Partner.
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