Artificial Intelligence

Toolkit launched to help museums engage with artificial intelligence

Article: David Styles | Image: © OonaghTweets/Twitter

The Museums + AI Network has published AI: A Museum Planning Toolkit, a resource designed to empower and inform cultural institutions as artificial intelligence becomes increasingly prevalent in the sector.

The Toolkit is informed by the work of 50 senior museum professionals and leading academics from the UK and US. The Network’s principal investigator, Dr Oonagh Murphy, and international co-investigator, Dr Elena Villaespesa, have led the project.

“AI technologies are becoming more pervasive in our lives, from search, to maps, to Alexa,” noted Dr Murphy.

“Museums provide a unique space from which to critically engage with what that means for society. This toolkit seeks to support museum professionals to ask big questions, yet deliver tangible solutions. The toolkit focusses on developing new modes of museum practice.”

A series of events held in London, New York and San Diego called Curator: Computer: Creator has also fed into the resource’s development. These were run in partnership with the Barbican Centre and Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum. During the sessions, models of practice were interrogated and refined to ensure the Toolkit is robust.

Anticipating AI 

Advisor attended one of the Museums + AI Network events at the Barbican last year. Find out what concepts were discussed here.

The document is designed to “start a conversation, it does not provide all the answers, or indeed offer solutions, but instead it serves as a foundation for critical engagement with these technologies and the possibilities and challenges that they offer,” according to its authors.


AI: A Museum Planning Toolkit is available in print or can be downloaded for free here.