40 European museums participate in DOORS program

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(Linz, 2.5.2022) DOORS stands for “Digital Incubator for Museums” and is a joint initiative of Ars Electronica, MUSEUM BOOSTER and Ecsite that supports small and medium-sized museums dealing with the digital transformation. Proposals for digital pilot projects were submitted until mid-February of this year. Out of 123 submissions, 40 museums from all over Europe have now been selected and will begin the first phase of the incubation program immediately. Over the next few months, the participating institutions will revise and adapt their pilot projects with the help of experts, workshops, pitching sessions, and meetings with mentors. 20 of the original 40 selected museums will then be given the opportunity to implement their projects.

123 submissions from all over Europe
Following the Open Call in December 2021, a total of 123 project proposals were received. From this pool, 40 institutions from all over Europe were selected, 45 percent of them from Central and Eastern Europe, 29 percent from Southern Europe, 17 percent from Western Europe and 9 percent from Northern Europe. For them, the first phase of the incubation and qualification program begins immediately. What was also striking about the submissions was their wide range, which not only speaks for the creativity and enthusiasm of the museums with regard to digitization, but also illustrates the challenges they are facing.

Wide variety of projects
The pilot proposals aim to integrate digital technologies and programs into the DNA of the respective organizations and to take a first step towards a future-proof digital transformation. Plans include developing activities that reflect visitors’ interests and expectations, purchasing equipment for creating digital content, or making their own organization more attractive to a wider audience through digital offerings. All the proposals show creative ways for cultural institutions to redefine their own roles.

From idea to implementation
Over the next few months, participating institutions will attend a variety of workshops covering topics ranging from the management and operational needs of a museum, to assessing their own digital skills and those of their staff, to analyzing visitors and developing a vision of what the optimal visitor experience of the future might look like. In addition, there will be two pitching sessions with providers of technical services and products who have extensive experience in providing digital solutions for the cultural sector. There will also be a focus on building a strong network of cultural institutions through shared learning and exchange between museums and building the foundations for future collaborations. In a final round, 20 of the original 40 museums will be selected to put their projects into action from November 2022 to June 2023.

About DOORS- Digital Incubator for Museums
With its incubation program, DOORS – Digital Incubator for Museums aims to help European museums integrate digital technologies and programs into their strategy and create a framework for sustainable digital transformation in the cultural sector. The DOORS consortium consists of Ars Electronica, MUSEUM BOOSTER and Ecsite – the European Network for Science Centers and Museums. DOORS – Digital Incubator for Museums is funded by Horizon 2020, the EU’s research and innovation program. The project started in October 2021 and will run until September 2023. It includes a two-stage program for museums and a research plan, the results of which will be published later.

Visitors of the Ars Electronica Center’s Deep Space 8K / Foto: Ars Electronica – Robert Bauernhansl / Printversion

Deep Space Music / NOHlab (TR) / Foto: Ars Electronica – Christopher Sonnleitner / Printversion