The Met has hired a new Chief Digital Officer, Sree Sreenivasan who held the same post at Columbia where he was a journalism professor. The move suggests the Met is embarking on a large-scale re-thinking of the ways that visitors and the press interact with the museum’s exhibits and the institution itself. Here’s an excerpt from the internal announcement quoted on Capital NY:
“Sree’s work in traditional journalism, his role as a commentator on technology and media issues, and his expertise in websites and social media will all be key to the Museum’s work in the digital space,” the memo from Thomas Campbell, the museum’s director and C.E.O., read in part. “His academic background will also position him well within our community of scholars, and we look forward to working with him as we leverage mobile, in-gallery, and online platforms for the Met’s collections.”
This news comes hot on the heels of press release issued by Bloomberg Philanthropies about its grants to museums to incorporate technology into the educational experience of museum going:
Five cultural institutions will receive a new $15 million commitment beginning in June 2013. Traditional audio guides–which have long been the default method of connecting museum-goers with exhibits–will be replaced by state-of-the art mobile guides that take advantage of cutting edge technologies like GPS and 3D imaging.
The $15 million commitment will go to five cultural institutions over a three-year period, including Art Institute of Chicago, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Museum of Modern Art, The New York Botanical Garden, and Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum.