Exhibition design and professional theories

The development of an astronomy exhibition

Authored by: Dirk vom Lehn , Kate Sang , Richard Glassborow , Louise King

The Routledge International Handbook of New Digital Practices in Galleries, Libraries, Archives, Museums and Heritage Sites

Print publication date:  November  2019
Online publication date:  October  2019

Print ISBN: 9781138581296
eBook ISBN: 9780429506765
Adobe ISBN:


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Scientists, policymakers and science educators are concerned with people’s disengagement with and lack of interest in science. Since the late 1990s, science centres, museums and other science-related exhibitions have been developed all around the world to re-engage people with science and scientific debates (Hein, 1990). The case study examined here is an example of an exhibition created during this science exhibition boom. While a large body of research explores visitors’ engagement with science in these kinds of exhibitions (Falk & Dierking, 2000; Hein, 1998), there is a dearth of studies investigating the development of science exhibitions. This chapter is an important initial step to address this gap in research. It contributes to related research on exhibition design and curatorial work conducted in the context of art exhibitions (Acord, 2010; Acord & DeNora, 2008; Kreps, 2003).

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