The Diamond “Dialoguing Museums for a New Cultural Democracy” project was a two year project co – funded by European Commission within the lifelong learning programme Grundtvig (adult education). Diamond started in November 2012 and ended in October 2014.
The project aimed at bringing together a group of scientific museums and research centres committed to provide learning opportunities for adult people. Diamond aimed at implementing pilot activities within scientific museums addressed to socially disadvantaged adults, using also ICT, namely digital storytelling and focussing on the issue of impact measurement and evaluation. To promote a greater appreciation of the role of scientific museums as a tool to engage adults and promote learning opportunities and social inclusion for disadvantaged groups.
More than 100 stories were collected and 55 museum professionals were trained in the digital storytelling methodology over the last two years.
The project leader ECCOM, Italy and the partnership was composed by 6 partners from Italy, Romania, Spain, 4 of which are scientific museums: “Grigore Antipa” National Museum of Natural History in Bucharest, Romania, “Ion Borcea” Natural Science Museum Complex, in Bacau Romania, The Museum of Natural Sciences in Valencia and the Civic Museum of Zoology (Rome, Italy).
Melting Pro. Laboratorio per la cultura thanks to its expertise was in charge of the training in digital storytelling of museum professionals in the project.
Diamond was a very ambitious project from the methodological point of view, addressing two challenges by creating a research project and model:
– How to face marginalization
– How to improve social inclusion by cultural experiences in Scientific museums
Many complex methodological fields: informal education, museum communication, new digital tools, intercultural dialogue…and many research questions tackling the more general concept of the effectiveness of socio-cultural museum policies and museum impact (Pilot projects) and the more specific e.g. effectiveness of Digital storytelling.
Overcoming «distances» and barriers:
- To approach non-public and marginalized people «out» Overcoming physical, psychological and cultural barriers
- To open a dialogue, to trigger interest towards museums
- To involve them in the realization of Digital Storytelling
- To build a communication strategy that puts audiences’ needs at the centre
Digital storytelling it’s a useful tool to build a relationship, sharing knowledge not only with peers but also with the audiences and understand their needs and therefore development new programmes/New audiences.
– Research phase: please click here
– Training courses for museum professionals with particular reference to Digital Storytelling (DS) as an effective method of engagement and involvement in museum activities addressed to museums professionals and to professionals operating in the social sector
- Training report – June and July – Valencia and Bucharest
- Training report – March – Rome
- Final training report
More on DS: https://www.slideshare.net/meltingproculture/digital-storytelling-in-diamondfinal-conference
Visit the website of DIAMOND
The methodology used:
Starting from the museum and its collection (what do you think about it? What is it in your opinion) participants wrote their own story (storyboard), recorded their own voices, select the pictures/drawings/images, realised a short video (2/3 mins.)
Participants told their own personal story based on the museum experience.
The stories were used to evaluate the impact of the museum activities on eh participants.
A comprehensive publication describing all the steps of the project evaluating the project’s outcomes is available in the download section of the Diamond website Another important aspect that Diamond faced is the need for Continuous professional development for museum professionals.
Museum professionals in Diamond were pleased of acquiring new technical skills and reflect about the power ICT in a museum context. They valued digital storytelling and the process as a way sharing knowledge among peers and to know more about their colleagues.
“Digital Storytelling is a key-tool to enhance the museum impact, to stimulate all personal skills, to facilitate intercultural inter-age dialogue and personal ways of expression.”- Elisabetta Falchetti, Zoology Museum of Rome, Italy.
“For me the DS method is an opportunity to make science accessible with the help of a new, relatively easy method”, Museum educator that took part in the Digital Storytelling training Enjoy the videos and the stories here:
YOUTUBE Videos and links to the stories
With Spanish subtitles: https://youtu.be/NsAWl0d-FMI
With Italian subtitles: https://youtu.be/LeZS1nmF8AA
With Rumanian: https://youtu.be/pi73dIaMl5o
All reports are available on https://www.diamondmuseums.eu/download.html included the handbook “Digital storytelling and inclusive scientific museums: a European project” edited by Cristina Da Milano and Elisabetta Falchetti (available in english, italian, spanish and romanian).