The Visitor Studies Group: Championing excellent visitor experiences

Newsletter – April 2017

**Please note that the information below was correct at the time of being emailed to members but may have changed since.

In this newsletter:
•  Conference 2017 review
•  Committee update
•  Alison James professional development bursary
•  Membership renewal
•  Financial statement
•  Connected Audience conference – call for papers

Welcome to our first newsletter of the 2017/18 membership year.  Read on to find out what the VSG committee has been up to recently and for some important announcements!
Conference 2017 review
Measuring up”: ways of capturing social value and more intangible outcomes’ may just have been our busiest and biggest conference yet.  More than 110 delegates travelled to the Royal Geographical Society in London to join in the conversation around an issue that many of us are currently grappling with.  Speakers from the cultural, public health and charitable sectors shared their experience and expertise on the subject providing a cross-disciplinary view that we found incredibly useful.

all of the projects presented showed that inspiration is there to be grabbed, moulded, and shaped into whatever project we choose

Bursary recipient, Louise Treble, from Glasgow Museums, has written a great short piece reflecting upon her experience of the conference. Read it here.

For a real-time account of ‘Measuring up’ have a look at our Storify or head over to our website where you can find many of the presentation slides.

Committee update
With Kayte stepping down as Chair and Lorna and Susie becoming Co-chairs, there has been a resulting shuffle of committee members and we are now looking for two committee helpers.  Please do get in touch if you’d like to be part of VSG and help us advocate for excellent visitor experience in all heritage venues.  Email for more information.

Alison James professional development bursary
Applications for the Alison James professional development bursary will open on Monday 10th April.  Pippa Gardner, the 2016 recipient, used the bursary to attend the VSA conference in Boston.  You can learn about Pippa’s experience by viewing her recent conference presentation.  The application form will be published on our bursary webpage.

Membership renewal 
Membership fees for the year 2017/18 are now due.  Please continue to support our network of audience research specialists advocate for our place in the sector.  You can renew through the how to join page on our website.

Financial statement
Our financial statement for the 2016/17 year can be reviewed here.

Call for papers
The 2nd International Museums Conference on Audience Research and Development has issued a call for papers.  Held in Vienna, September 14th to 16th, 2017, the conference aims to bring together experts and practitioners from the museum and culture sector from around the world to share and debate cutting-edge thinking and innovative practice in audience research and development. The main goal is to explore how audience research can support museums and other cultural institutions in gaining a greater understanding of their audiences to increase participation and engagement. The call is open until 18th April 2017.  More information can be found on the conference website.

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