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Developing a New National Strategy

Developing a New National Strategy

Lucy Casot, CEO of MGS, discusses this first stage of developing the national strategy.


Museums Galleries Scotland previous national strategy, Going Further, is now drawing to a close. We are now developing our new national strategy which will launch in early 2023. To achieve this, we are working with research and insight experts, Diffley Partnership to design an inclusive, engaging and creative strategy development process.

We have adapted the Design Council’s Double Diamond with the following four development stages.

  1. Discover - we will gather broad inspiration and insights to understand the context for our sector’s work.
  2. Define - drawing upon the insights gathered from the Discover phase. Injecting collective decision processes to define the strategic aims and objectives of the new strategy.
  3. Develop - co-designing our plans to deliver the strategic aims and objectives, drawing upon all types of museums and groups of museums.
  4. Deliver - sense testing our strategy and delivery plan with and beyond our sector, finalisation, and launch

The Discovery Phase

It is crucial our museums sector is at the forefront in every stage, starting with the Discover phase. This phase relies on your contribution to help design our future. From now until February we are hosting a series of online roundtable events. These events will explore the themes of Society, Economy and Environment - looking at the context in which we work, and what that means for us as a sector. We invite your contributions as individuals, organisations, and museum collectives/forums. If you are not working in the sector and are interested in contributing to the strategy development, please get in touch.

After each roundtable we plan to share the speaker presentations to gather further input and responses and enable those unable to attend to contribute ideas. If are unable to attend an event, you can still watch the recorded presentations and share your thoughts on each roundtable theme below.

Discover Roundtable Presentations

Discover Roundtable theme: Society 1 - Human Rights and Sustainable Development Goals

Henry McGhie from Curating Tomorrow discusses how Sustainable Development Goals and human rights-based approaches are relevant to museums and how they can be brought into the strategy.

Discover Roundtable theme: Economy

Stephen Blackman from Natwest Research Academy spoke about the economic trends of the past 25 years and how the pandemic has accelerated change. Graeme Blackett from BiGGAR Economics spoke about the pandemics impact on the economy and tourism.

Discover Roundtable theme: Environment 

Dr Deborah Long from Scottish Environment LINK said nature loss is accelerating in Scotland and around the world. Museums can help by making connections to nature in everyday life and providing learning opportunities. Dan Barlow from Climate XChange said there is a need for big societal changes in the coming decade – in transport, heating, land use, and diet. Museums and galleries are skilled in knowledge exchanges as they can share information in a dynamic way. 

Discover Roundtable theme: Wellbeing economy and Fair work

Jimmy Paul from WeALL Scotland discussed the concept of wellbeing as an alternative to focus on economic growth as the measure of success. Douglas White said that collective wellbeing requires equal focus on social, economic, environmental and democratic wellbeing. He noted that there is an increased recognition of the importance of work-life balance and flexibility but it is affecting various workers differently.

Discover Roundtable theme: Decolonisation

Dr Ima Jackson from Glasgow Caledonian University, discussed how museums and galleries have to critically think about the ethical and moral responsibility to truthfully engage with what has been historically done in society. Sehar Mehmood and Sam Shabbir from the Changemaker Program, said that museums need to focus on not just bringing in new exhibits but analysing the ones that already exist.