GIFT is an EU-funded research project focused on developing playful experiences connecting visitors to exhibition content.

As part of GIFT, I work with 10 interdisciplinary museums in a hands-on design-research process. During this 18-month period, my colleagues and I design and execute a series of labs focused on creating unique, forward-thinking cultural experiences for a range of audiences. Between workshops, we hold online coaching sessions with our museum partners, during which we focus on organizational development, design methodologies and state-of-the-art research related to GIFT’s project themes of playfulness, personalization and audience engagement.

Over the course of this process, we have been developing and implementing tools for reflection, content development and evaluation. These tools, as well as best practices we have observed during the process, will be published for free use by other cultural institutions interested in developing playful experiences at their own institutions. This research process is just one part of GIFT; other areas of the project include prototypes, critical theory, and design tools.

Other GIFT project partners include Blast Theory, Culture24, and the Mixed Reality Lab at the University of Nottingham.