This museum is experimenting with new kinds of community collaborations that invite individuals and organizations to help bring temporary exhibitions to life through related programming—both insisde and outside of the museum. The museum’s evaluation and programming staff asked Slover Linett to conduct an evaluation of this emergent initiative to better understand the impacts of exhibition-based partnership programming and to inform its continued evolution. We conducted interviews both with internal stakeholders to the museum and with community partners involved in past collaborations to gain a holistic view of partnerships. And we facilitated a collaborative strategy development session at the museum, fueled by the research findings, with a cross-departmental team. We focused the museum’s attention on the fact that a lack of clear prioritization of the initiative’s many, and sometimes competing, goals resulted in staff who were working towards different definitions of success. These disparate visions of success affected partner organizations who received mixed (or missing) signals about the goals, duration, and intensity of the collaboration, resulting in some dissatisfaction when expectations weren’t aligned with reality. The strategy session helped the museum team play out scenarios of success as well as the implications of goal prioritization on partnership strategies, methods, and communications in the future. Photo credit: Craig Janson

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An absolute privilege to be invited to stay overnight in #FraankLloydWright's SunCottage on the campus of #TaliesinWest. I got to sit on the furniture and #explore the nooks and crannies. It is still so alive! Thank you @WrightTaliesin! #WorldHeritageSites @sloverlinett

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