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On trial: virtual reality

The Supreme Court of the Ecsite Conference will decide whether virtual reality (VR) in museums and science centres is visceral reality providing vital reactions, or just virtually rudimentary and very rubbish.

Virtual Reality can offer many benefits to a science centre or museum. Providing global access to collections, additional content about displayed objects and out of this world experiences, it promises to be a new weapon in deepening engagement with our audiences. But how ready are museums for these disruptive interventions within their sites? Whilst adopting VR requires a significant investment in new technologies, it also brings with it the need to understand shifts in visitor behaviour and expectations, changes in learning models, and a new audience of young people growing up with technology and demanding cutting edge revolutions on an annual basis.  

From the often used quote ‘don’t use tech for tech’s sake’ to the offerings of a new story-telling and educational toolbox, VR is here to stay and the question is: should museums and science centres embrace it or stay away from it and send it to jail? Participants will be enrolled as our esteemed Ecsite jury and invited to decide.



Museum of London
United Kingdom

Session speakers

Project Manager
Aliki will be back as the prosecutor of this trial. Bringing with her two key witnesses she will try to prove that museums are not yet ready to fully embrace VR
Head of Global Engagement
United Kingdom
Brad, the Defence solicitor, will be representing VR in this trial calling out museums and science centres to embrace it and keep it out of Jail.
Development & Experience Design
Den Haag
Maarten Okkersen, witness for the prosecution, will give evidence on the damage VR has brought to museums around the world...