Insegnamento a.a. 2019-2020


Department of Social and Political Sciences

Course taught in English
Go to class group/s: 31
ACME (6 credits - I sem. - OBS  |  4 credits L-ART/04  |  2 credits SECS-P/07)
Course Director:

Classes: 31 (I sem.)

Suggested background knowledge


Mission & Content Summary


Museum management is complex and multifaceted. Museums exist to preserve and study tangible and untangible collections as well as to educate different audiences, but they are also institutions that must employ sound and sustainable business practices while being accountable to the public as non-profit organizations. In this regard the course of Museum Management explores the design, planning and the socio-economic impacts of museum development, as well as budgeting and strategies in museum practice. Diverse types of museums are assessed, including fine arts museums, history museums, anthropology museums and science museums. The course then shifts focus to museum practice by addressing museum management, exhibition development, museum education and collections care, focusing on the impact of technologies and digital devices. Moreover, the course traces the history and current debates of museum globalization, discusses the recent museological debate concerning the internalization process and examines the current issues of travelling exhibitions development as it faces the future of museums in the 21st century.


The Course focuses on the following main issues, set in a theoretical framework in frontal lessons and developed empirically through the illustration and discussion of some case studies.

  • Introduction: museum in historical perspective.
  • Current topics in the museological debate.
  • Museum studies and globalization.
  • Museums and urban regeneration: pro & cons.
  • The new global market for museum contents.
  • Museum planning: legal and planning documents.
  • Collections management.
  • Facilities management.
  • Exhibition, interaction & graphic design.
  • Technologies: uses and abuses.
  • The digital museum.
  • Temporary exhibitions: in & outbound.
  • The emerging market of travelling exhibitions.
  • Education and public programmes.
  • Strategic positioning: joint ventures, franchised museums and internationalization.
  • Organization & personnel management.
  • Budget management and accountability.
  • Edging on sustainability.
  • Marketing and community relations.
  • Audience development and engagement.
  • Development, fundraising and membership.
  • Museums social, economic and media impact.
  • Evaluation and assessments.
  • Overview of future trends.

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILO)


At the end of the course student will be able to...
  • Demonstrate knowledge of major theoretical, methodological and professional themes in museum management.
  • Express awareness of the leading museum-related issues.
  • Identify the needs of museum global market.


At the end of the course student will be able to...
  • Apply the knowledge gained within specific professional contexts, such as museum and exhibition planning.
  • Select and analyse information relevant to a research project.
  • Execute and write up projects on museum-related topics.
  • Plan, execute and write up an extended research project on science in museums, science museums and collections or utilise a technical or scientific methodology for the investigation of museums.

Teaching methods

  • Face-to-face lectures
  • Guest speaker's talks (in class or in distance)
  • Company visits
  • Group assignments


  • Each year 3 practioners are invited to give in class talks: a senior curator, an exhibition designer and a travelling exhibition project manager.
  • 2-3 museum visits are organized  a part from ordinary class activities: the visits are managed by museum senior curators and keepers. 
  • Groups assignments are agreed with outstanding museums, cultural institutions and exhibitions spaces; the final versions are discussed in class at the end of the course. Prof. Guerzoni is available to organize on a weekly base extra course meetings to supervise their development.

Assessment methods

  Continuous assessment Partial exams General exam
  • Written individual exam (traditional/online)
  • Group assignment (report, exercise, presentation, project work etc.)
  • Active class participation (virtual, attendance)


  • 80% of attendance gives the status of attending student.
  • Written exam (2 hours) on the subjects covered in slides and compulsory readings attributes 60% of the final grade.
  • The evaluation of the final version of group assigments (paper of 4000-5000 words) attributes the remaining 40% of the final grade.


Written exam (2 hours) on all the subjects covered in the textbooks, slides and readings attributes 100% of the final grade.

Teaching materials


Slides and selected readings provided by the teacher (all of them are available in open pdf format, according to fair use policies).


Slides, selected readings and three textbooks:

  • G. GUERZONI, Museum on the Map 1995-2012, Torino, Allemandi, 2014 (available in open pdf format).
  • B. LORD, G. LORD DEXTER, L. MARTIN (eds.), The Manual of Museum Planning: Sustainable Space, Facilites and Operations, Lanham, AltaMira Press, 2012.
  • N. KOTLER, P. KOTLER, W. KOTLER, Museum marketing and strategy, San Francisco, Jossey-Bass, 2008.
Last change 06/05/2019 16:01