The Visitor Studies Group: Championing excellent visitor experiences
Welcome to the July newsletter. You will see the committee have been very busy on your behalf and you can look forward to a new website, action plan and events announcements in the next few months. Also below you will find many calls for you to contribute, please consider if you can as the VSG is only as strong as its membership. Thanks.
We are pleased to let you know that work is now underway on the new website.
As you know, this has been a priority for the Committee for some time and we are now financially able to make this happen. We are aiming to make sure that the site is easier to use, without membership login required, and better represents the group and its work.
We still need more photographs from our members to illustrate the website. Do you have any images of Visitor Studies in action? If you would be willing to share them, we will be sure to credit you or your organisation. Please send any images to firstname.lastname@example.org by 6th August. We are also reviewing our resources and links pages. If you have any feedback on links/articles/reports/tools you would like to see anything from your own work which you would be happy to share then please let us know.
Consultants / Freelancers
As part of the website update, we are overhauling our ‘find a consultant’ page. All fully paid up members are eligible for inclusion here at no additional cost. If you would like to be included please email email@example.com and Lyndsey will send you a form to complete with your entry information.
Our current strategy, written three years ago, is now due for review. The committee have decided to build on this strategy by producing an Action Plan to cover the next three years.
This Action Plan 2014-17 builds on the original strategy and provides a working tool for the Committee which highlights the tasks to be undertaken to meet the Group’s aims and objectives. It will be used by the Committee to ensure that the Group’s aims and objective are met and by Members to gain insight into how Membership fees are utilised. The new Plan, currently being prepared, will be shared with members by the end of August 2014.
Alison James Professional Development Bursary
We are delighted to announce that Gina Koutsika was successful in her application to receive the Alison James Professional Development Bursary. This is a Bursary of £500 which can be used to cover travel, conference registration fees or other related expenses. Gina will be used the Bursary to assist in funding her attendance at the 2014 ICOM CECA & UMAC Conference in Egypt later this year. We look forward to hearing back from Gina about her experience and knowledge gained when she presents at the next VSG Conference.
As you know, we held elections to the committee at the AGM at the conference and also a further online vote for the final available place. So this seems a good time to update everybody on the whole committee. You can find photos and biogs of all committee members on our existing website, and these will be included and updated on the new website.
VSG Committee Member Lorna will be hosting a ‘meet other VSG members’ stall at this event. Please come along and say hello and share what you are working on. Lorna has some guest places for the evening so email her before you book your ticket and you might get a free place!
The VSG, in collaboration once again with GEM Scotland, will be hosting an event on the topic of “Accessibility” in Edinburgh in October 2014.
A Call for Papers together with more detail about the venue, timing etc will follow in due course. We are delighted to be working again alongside GEM Scotland and look forward to another event with skill sharing and best practice and the top of the agenda.
Work is beginning on the VSG Conference 2015 which we aim to hold in early March. The venue still has to be agreed and we are developing the theme(s) building on the feedback from last year’s Conference. A request for proposals will be distributed in September 2014 and, as ever, we would welcome submissions from across the Visitor Studies community.
Other News and Events
While reviewing our membership benefits for the business plan and website we have reviewed our policy on listing non-VSG events.
We would now like to offer to all members the benefit of having any of your events that relate to Visitor Studies listed both here in this section of the newsletter and on our new events calendar on the new website.
Events should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org with a date, title and web-link for further information and booking. We hope that you will all find the ability to share your events and find out about those run by other members a valuable membership benefit.
Do you have any news or reports to share with other members? The next newsletter will be published in September. Please send any news for inclusion to email@example.com by 5th September.