Norsk Teknisk Museum wins 2015 Ecsite Creativity Award

#EcsiteAwards winner 2015: Norsk Teknisk Museum for TING exhibition
#EcsiteAwards winner 2015: Norsk Teknisk Museum for TING exhibition#EcsiteAwards winner 2015: Norsk Teknisk Museum for TING exhibition#EcsiteAwards winner 2015: Norsk Teknisk Museum for TING exhibition#EcsiteAwards winner 2015: Norsk Teknisk Museum for TING exhibition#EcsiteAwards winner 2015: Norsk Teknisk Museum for TING exhibition

Ecsite President Rosalia Vargas announced the lucky winner of the 2015 Ecsite Creative Award tonight in Trento at the Ecsite conference’s Gala Dinner. The Norsk Teknisk Museum from Norway won the prize for TING, “a participatory, immersive exhibition experience for exploring the complex relationships between technology and democracy.” Watch the project video.

This was the first edition of the Mariano Gago Ecsite Awards, named after the internationally respected Portuguese science advocate who passed away last April. The Mariano Gago Ecsite Awards encourage those people and organisations who demonstrate innovation, creativity and who through their work actively show how they are making an impact.

Put together to celebrate the coinciding bicentenary of the Norwegian constitution and centenary of the Norsk Teknisk Museum (Oslo), the TING exhibition invites visitors to question the impact that future technologies like DNA scanning, 3D printing or drones will have on democracy. The exhibition brings together collections pieces and state-of-the-art interactivity to frame contemporary issues in their historical and societal context. Like in the ancient “ting” assembly, visitors debate and vote on these questions, generating stunning data visualization graphics.

Scenarios and prototypes were tested with target audience groups during the exhibition development process that mobilized the entire Norsk Teknisk Museum team. “We are particularly proud of this project that embodies our philosophy: we have created an integrated exhibition model, blending together the best of science centres with the best of more traditional museums. We think that it’s important to bring interactive elements into a social and/or historical context, making the museum relevant to the young people of today,” explained Jan Alfred Andersson, Head of the Oslo Science Centre, a department of the Norwegian Museum of Science and Technology.

The Jury praised the project’s courageous ambition to make the museum “a space for public discourse and an advocate for democratic values” and to “engage reserved Norwegians in discussions with people they don’t know”.

When asked what piece of advice he would give to colleagues wishing to develop similar “democracy meets technology” projects, Andersson recommended: “spend time and energy getting your questions right. Finding the right “hook” for each topic and building bridges with your target audience’s everyday life is crucial. And… be bold!”

Stay tuned: Spokes magazine #9 out next week will feature an interview with Jan Alfred Andersson, telling us more about the TING project development process and visitor experience.

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Norsk Teknisk Museum

The Norwegian Museum of Science and Technology (NTM) was founded in 1914 in conjunction with a National Centennial Exposition. NTM is located in Oslo and hosts a Science Center. The Museum covers the following topics; transport, aviation, the history of wood and metal industries, plastics in a modern society, clocks and watches, calculating machines and computers, as well as the history of energy, electricity, oil and gas.

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