The 21st century is a new era full of changes and challenges. As a result, globalization, information and communication technological revolution have brought new development opportunities for contemporary museums. With "Internet plus", museums must respond to various social changes proactively, operate more efficiently, and provide diversified public education, exhibitions, researches and leisure services.
Guangdong Museum has been established for 58 years, and isa comprehensive museum with collections of history, fine arts and natural history. As one part of the rapid development of Chinese museums, Guangdong museum has actively taken responsibility to become an important museum and a cultural center in the south of China. Under the guidance of the No-Boundary Museum concept, Guangdong Museum has dedicated itself to smart museum construction, museum-community integration planning and creative industry projects since 2014, promoted integrated innovation in methods, technologies and organization. As a result, it won the Chinese Museum Association's Award for "the most innovative Chinese museums 2016".
Inspired by Smarter Planet and Smarter City plan of IBM company, Guangdong Museum practice the smart museum project since 2015, that project focuses on setting up multi-dimensional exchange and intellectualization among museum collection, information and the public. We put forward that the road to smart museums based on big data, internet of things, and cloud computing should include three dimensions, such as smart management, smart conservation and smart services. Such "smart" museums are significantly different in nature from "digital" museums, which started to be popular toward the end of last century. In order to implement smart museum projects, we have systematically designed programs in terms of development philosophy, construction pattern, main content, technical route and time schedule. With a three-year effort, the smart museum project of the Guangdong Museum has been built. In the field of smart management, eight systems have been improved in function or the integration of information resources, including the office automation System (OA), the collections management system, the digital resource management system, the audience digitized integration management system, and the service bus system, etc., initially realizing business collaboration and automatic big data acquisition. In the field of smart conservation, an environmental monitoring system and a conservation information management system have been built; those two systems provide real-time monitoring and control the micro-environment of the museum, making it possible for preventative conservation to preserve the collections of the museum. In the field of smart service, we focus on the construction of new media, multi-media and service systems, providing more humanized and diversified museum experiences for on-line and off-line visitors by reappearing and sharing collection data, exhibition panorama roaming, smart service APPs and digital interactive spaces, etc.
Museums matter only to the extent that they are perceived to provide communities they serve with something of value beyond their mere existence, and the museum-community integration plan was put forward just based on this idea. We hope that the building of museum would not be a physical boundary of museum resource and service. With the expansion of physical or virtual space, we make museums integrated organically with more communities, and such efforts may help museums play an important role in making up the social gap, promoting its relations with the economy and quality of public life and realizing museum's function and sustainable development. For these purposes, we try to develop museum exhibitions and educational activities in some important public spaces, such as metros, airports, parks and city squares, etc., as well as some life spaces, such as residential areas, hospitals, shopping centers, schools and zoos, etc. In the meantime, we make use of the platform of the Guangdong touring museums to make the culture service of museum cover the areas outside big cities, and allow people on remote islands, in villages and military camps who have little chance to visit museum to have fair access to enjoy the cultural services from the museum.
For the development of cultural and creative industries, we have implemented franchising modes and expanded the creative ability of museums by the adoption of social funds and collaboration with universities. The franchising model emphasizes in-depth cooperation between museum and enterprises and market. The change from museum to related foundation or other social sources as the producer of cultural products has enhanced the refreshment and reinvention of the museum. And the museum-institute cooperation is on the basis of mutual benefits, through which the museum provides abundant exhibits while talents from institutes may design more attractive cultural industry with their latest technology.
Development is based on innovation. In five consecutive years, Guangdong Museum has witnessed a steady growth in the number of visitors and the improvement of service quality. In 2016, there were 4.3 million visitors visited our museum, including the Guangdong touring museum. Guangdong Museum has become a crucial place for the public to understand nature, become aware of culture and acquire knowledge.
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