Posts in research
A visit from the god of research

I was lying on the couch yesterday, staring up at the ceiling, thinking about this research project I’m planning. (If you’re a new list member, you can read about my research questions over here.)

I’m going to explore the underlying Jobs donors and members hire (and fire) museums for. The goal is to uncover what deeper purposes museums serve for different kinds of constituents. A big part of the project will be interviewing members and donors. Most museums aren’t interviewing constituents. I want to see how much more they might learn if they were to go beyond their usual surveys.

Still lying on the couch, I revisited the question of whether I should conduct these interviews over video or if I should travel to people’s homes to talk with them in person. Interviewing over video is far more convenient, but talking with people in person — in their world — opens up new potential layers of meaning …

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researchKyle Bowenjtbd
Three questions for the research gods

Over the past few months, a few questions have come up that I’d like answers to (in no particular order):

  1. To what degree are museums practicing design research today?

  2. What does the donor journey look like — what obstacles must museum donors overcome to go from visitor to member to donor? What motivates people to make that journey, and how do museums help some people become better versions of themselves?

  3. What is the value of reviews or social word-of-mouth to museums?

These are the questions I’m considering as I plan a research project that I’ll pursue over the next several months.

The question(s) I choose to answer will likely become a core part of what I write about in these letters in the weeks to come. So, let’s take a closer look at the menu.

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