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Countdown To The NZmuseums Website Launch

25 August 2008
Media Release

Countdown To The NZmuseums Website Launch

The redeveloped website NZMuseums (nzmuseums.co.nz) will be launched on Wednesday 17 September 2008 by National Services Te Paerangi a team at the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa.

The new website will be a global showcase for the collections and activities of New Zealand museums. It will also be a museum directory, online collection management system, and a site for discussion and learning about museum issues and events through its Blog, News, and What’s On sections.

“We are pleased to be presenting this national digital initiative on behalf of the museums of New Zealand,” Dr Seddon Bennington, Te Papa’s Chief Executive, said today. “All museums can take part, but this new website particularly enables smaller museums that do not have a web presence to show their wonderful collections to the world. The site will also draw visitors to museums that they might otherwise not have known about.”

“We are really excited about this site. “So far, fifty museums have placed their collections online in time for the launch,” said Wallis Barnicoat, Manager Museum Development in National Services Te Paerangi. “Over the last year we have been preparing museums to be involved, and we look forward to the number of museums and their contributions to the site growing exponentially over time.”

The new NZMuseums website will give museums large and small the opportunity to get feedback from the public. This will, for example, help many museums to acquire more information about objects in their collections, such as identifying un-named people in photographs.

Liz Dodd, Museum Advisor for Te Aroha, Firth Tower and Morrin museums said of their involvement, “NZMuseums provides an invaluable opportunity for the collections of the three small museums in our district to be seen on a national and potentially international stage. It is a tool to help make our collections more accessible to a much wider audience. That’s got to be good for sharing information and providing a better and better service to the public”

“It gives New Zealand museums a shared identity like being in the living room together. For a small museum with big aspirations and funding challenges, it gives us maximum benefit for minimum expenditure i.e. more bang for someone else’s bucks!”, Kaaren Mitcalfe of Owaka Museum said of their involvement today.

Wednesday 17 September will see the launch of the first phase of nzmuseums.co.nz. As the website grows, more interactivity, such as virtual exhibitions and street maps, will be added.

NZMuseums is just one of many initiatives driven by National Services Te Paerangi, a team that provides practical and strategic help throughout Aotearoa New Zealand. Their goal is for museums and iwi to have increased public participation in their programmes, and for them to be significantly strengthened by working collaboratively at a local and national level.
For more information about the NZMuseums project go to: www.nationalservices.tepapa.govt.nz

ENDS

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