With Jessica Juckes, Coordinator, British Art Network, Tate

Subject Specialist Networks (SSN) bring together specialists in a particular area of museum work or collections research. In the UK, the wide range of SSNs includes Dress and Textiles, Islamic Art and Material Culture, Rural Museums, and Plastics!

Specialists can often feel isolated within their institution and local museum ecology. SSNs offer a way for people to link up and share knowledge and ideas with people across their region or nation who are doing similar work.

At a time of great economic difficulty worldwide, with staff cuts and contracts not renewed, many specialists may be asked to take on a more generalist role in their museums. Engagement with an SSN allows specialists the time and space to continue developing their area of specialism. It also gives the chance to support to those who have been given responsibility over an aspect of the collection or museum work that is newer to them.

Involvement with an SSN can also offer real benefit towards museum workers’ wellbeing, enabling them to encounter people facing similar challenges and foster solidarity, mutual support and collaboration.

For information about existing subject specialist networks in the UK.

Subject Specialist Network Consortium

An online platform where you can emulate networking like in the real world!

High Fidelity