Why Culture must always be a Commons

This blog is cross-posted from the Collections Trust blog

altWritten by: Nick Poole, CEO, Collections Trust

In case I haven’t already made it abundantly clear – I love museums, libraries and archives. I think that investing in professional communities who bring together and protect our shared heritage and make it available for use and enjoyment is one of the most important marks of an enlightened society. The future, after all, is made of everything that came before it, and our job as a profession is to defend the universal and inalienable principle that people must be free to benefit from their heritage. […]

Influence or evidence?

Some time ago now, I had the opportunity to go for dinner with two Baronesses. The conversation got round to the challenges of advocating for the arts, museums and libraries. “If you had to choose”, I asked, “between influence and evidence, which would you choose”. Both replied instantly and decisively, “Influence, of course. It doesn’t[…]

Building a successful online presence for libraries

The vision is pretty clear – people have gone online. They have become accustomed to beautiful products like Spotify or iTunes which use a tremendous amount of skill and engineering to mask complexity and offer a simple, seamless experience which drives repeated use. If libraries are to compete in a connected culture, we need one[…]

The New Cultural Economy

In his recent article for Prospect, Anatole Kaletsky argues convincingly that in order to secure victory in the forthcoming Election Labour leader Ed Milliband must articulate an intellectual strategy based on a ‘new model of global capitalism that has been evolving since the 2008 crisis.’

Kaletsky states that ‘the key characteristic of [Labour’s new] economic model should be collaboration between business and Government’. In his model, public service and enterprise are not at odds, but rather coexist along a spectrum of delivery which serves 3 long-standing left-wing principles: ‘public ownership or control of production, government provision of social services and redistribution of income to limit inequality’.

A global success story […]

If Steve Jobs Made a Museum

OK, let me get this out of the way from the beginning. I am not an Apple fanboy. I own an iPod, but I have never used a Macbook (I don’t trust anything that doesn’t have a DOS prompt). I have tried to avoid writing this post, but for some reason it just won’t go away.

Last month, Steve Jobs died leaving behind him a company whose projects have touched the hearts and changed the lives of millions of people. I never met the guy, and I know nothing about him other than what I have read in the press both before and after his death. And yet, the mythology is of a man who transformed the world of consumer electronics because of at least 4 fundamental qualities: […]