Struggling and Advocating for Visitor Inclusion

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  • Title: Struggling and Advocating for Visitor Inclusion: The Case of the National Museum of Colombia
  • Author(s): Carlos Eduardo Serrano Vasquez
  • Publisher: Common Ground Research Networks
  • Collection: Common Ground Research Networks
  • Series: The Inclusive Museum
  • Journal Title: The International Journal of the Inclusive Museum
  • Keywords: Visitors, Disability, Diversity
  • Volume: 10
  • Issue: 4
  • Year: 2018
  • ISSN: 1835-2014 (Print)
  • ISSN: 1835-2022 (Online)
  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.18848/1835-2014/CGP/v10i04/37-46
  • Citation: Serrano Vasquez, Carlos Eduardo. 2018. "Struggling and Advocating for Visitor Inclusion: The Case of the National Museum of Colombia." The International Journal of the Inclusive Museum 10 (4): 37-46. doi:10.18848/1835-2014/CGP/v10i04/37-46.
  • Extent: 10 pages

Abstract

This work focuses on the different struggles to enhance visitor access that museum professionals deal with when developing museum projects. The discussion is based on the participation of the National Museum of Colombia’s Department of Education during a museum renovation process and the design of projects targeting visitors with different disabilities. The article analyses the diverse motivations of museum departments and disciplines, their contradictions, and the need for policies and methodologies to ensure that visitors are placed at the centre of educational and cultural projects. Moreover, it questions the role of communities as passive targets and proposes a shift in the design and leadership of inclusive activities. The inclusive Volunteers Program, the integration of devices for “non-segregated” enjoyment, and the development of educational services for people with disabilities provide a framework not only to describe good practices, but also to discuss the difficulties and challenges that museums face when seeking to guarantee an on-going process of inclusion.