Innovation Project: Amsterdam Museum opens its first debate dedicated area, ‘The Discussion Lab’

Innovation Project: Amsterdam Museum opens its first debate dedicated area, ‘The Discussion Lab’

The Amsterdam Museum inaugurates ‘The Discussion Lab’, its first area entirely dedicated to debate and interaction between the Museum, the visitors and the city of Amsterdam.

Made in collaboration with journalism students from HU University of Applied Sciences Utrecht, ‘The Discussion Lab’ will be placed on top of the Panorama Amsterdam exhibition’s Laboratory, a previously underused space within the Museum’s main exhibition room.

This new initiative aims to stimulate the interaction between visitors by allowing them to discuss actualities and dilemmas from Amsterdam, either with volunteers from the Museum or other visitors.

Shy visitors, or simply people who do not want to be bothered, have nothing to worry about; the Amsterdam Museum will be giving everyone green or red stickers, meaning ‘do not approach me’ and ‘please talk to me’ respectively. Needless to say that only those who agree to take part in ‘The Discussion Lab’ will have their visit disturbed.

On this new project to improve the Museum’s interactivity, director Michelle De Vries said: “With the help of these brilliant journalists from HU, we expect to make ‘The Discussion Lab’ a place which brings togethers our visitors and let them express their opinions on the issues the city of Amsterdam faces.”

“Interactivity and inclusiveness have always been matters of great importance for the Amsterdam Museum, even more now with the Museum’s new location and new visual identity. We are counting on ‘The Discussion Lab’ project to make the Amsterdam Museum a place where the public comes together to dive into the life and history of Amsterdam and its people, thus, this discussion space will be a great addition to our exhibition.”

Certainly a key player in making ‘The Discussion Lab’ a reality, Femke Van de Vaart, one of the volunteers responsible for leading the debate area and suggesting discussion topics to visitors, expresses her gladness to take part in such an initiative: “When I got aware of ‘The Discussion Lab’ I had no doubts about volunteering! I think this is a fantastic opportunity to make more people connect to the Museum and the city.”

“Also, I think it is very important for the Museum to be a place for people to talk to each other, and discuss issues that are dear to all of us. Who knows what amazing ideas and formidable debates can emerge from ‘The Discussion Lab’?”

‘The Discussion Lab’ will be open to all visitors carrying a green sticker from Friday to Sunday, from 10:00 to 18:00.