22 Pages

Collection development strategy

Potentially everything is useful and interesting
WithElizabeth A. Walker, Diane Gwilt

This chapter examines the ways museums collect and assesses various strategic approaches to collecting. It highlights the benefits of creating a collection development strategy and outlines the approach taken by Amgueddfa Cymru–National Museum Wales. Museums hold a collection which would have started its life from something; a single item, or a collection of items, to which further objects were added. Museums located in countries that have an accreditation scheme, such as the UK, USA, Australia and New Zealand, are familiar with the need to create and define a collecting policy. The thematic approach encouraged museum staff to work with university researchers who brought new perspectives and a global dimension to the project. The strategy enables the museum to collect items in responsible ways and fulfil its role as a national museum, using its collections for public benefit now as well as preserving them for future generations.