Ed Lawless co-manages the Samsung Digital Discovery Centre at the British Museum. He manages a team that develop resources and deliver events which enable families, schools, and other young visitors to engage with two million years of history through the Museum’s collection. Resources range from a suite of tablet-based gallery activities for primary school students to online art and design activities for families. The events programme ranges from coding workshops for under 5s to museum scavenger hunts for young adults. Most recently he has focused his efforts on Virtual Visits, once a fringe workshop format, now the very core of the Museum’s programme for schools.
Since starting his career as a volunteer at the British Museum in 2013, Ed has aimed to make the Museum more accessible, more relevant, and more enjoyable for young visitors. Since he began managing the SDDC in 2017, he has steered it towards creating content to reach larger numbers of visitors and engage them deeper than ever before. He has learnt how to navigate the choppy waters of digital project management within one of the world’s largest Museums and has helped build the Museum’s competency in delivering digital learning content, not least by growing its team of digital learning experts.
He has an abundant eagerness to share his expertise with all who will listen, and pairs that with an appetite to learn from all those around him.
MuseumNext Digital Summit
Friday, 26 February 2021
From virtually unknown to virtually everywhere
Live interactive schools workshops rocketed from an often forgotten footnote attracting only a handful of bookings to being the front-and-centre of the British Museum’s learning offer almost overnight. This presentation will explore how that happened and how it has been a catalyst for other digital successes around the organisation. From content to format, from interactivity to safeguarding, from tech skills to presenting personalities, from infrastructure to marketing, the Virtual Visits programme has been a case study on what it is like to scale up a digital project in an organisation.
Find the full programme here