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StoryKiosk gathering stories in the National Mall with Washington Post Magazine
4 min read

Museum Stories to Support Urban and Regional Planning

In what ways can museums use their public engagement tools — including exhibits and popups — to inform city and regional planners as they create regional plans? The plans touch on a wide range of issues that directly affect our museum communities, including climate resilience, economic development, accessible public parks, environmental justice, and more.

Betsy Loring of expLoring exhibits and engagement who has collaborated with regional planning researchers on to create planning-themed science interactives, has been writing and leading conference sessions on the topic — you can read the article she wrote for Exhibition magazine here

I was pleased to participate on the panel Betsy led at the New England Museum Association conference this past October. My special interest at StoryHabitat: how can we use short videos from a broad range of citizens to help inform those plans?

I noted in our conference session a couple projects where we gathered stories specifically connected to regional planning, including this project with the Fresh Paint Mural Arts festival in Springfield, MA described in more detail here.


Community Stories recorded at Fresh Paint Mural Arts Festival

We’ll be presenting on the topic at the ACM Interactivity conference in May in a session led by Betsy, along with fellow panelists Julia Bland, Executive Director of Louisiana Children’s Museum, and Joeseph Cox, President & CEO of Museum of Discovery and Science in Ft. Lauderdale. Looking forward to the conversations!

custom bicycle with video capture
StoryBike gathering stories at the Fresh Paint mural arts festival
Brad has contributed to the field with presentations at AAM, ASTC, and ACM Interactivity, where he has led sessions on empathy in exhibits. He has served as a website judge for Museums and the Web and the New England Museum Association, and as a Reviewer for IMLS Leadership Grant proposals.