RCMG have a well-established approach to the capturing of outcomes and impact from research projects, using a range of methods which aim to capture participant experiences and voices from a range of perspectives, including project partners, artists and creative practitioners and museum staff. Our approach is shaped by well-defined ethical concerns, which take into consideration the backgrounds, experiences and needs of participants.
The evaluation of Encountering the Unexpected was framed by the following questions:
- How can natural heritage collections support living and ageing well?
- What are the opportunities and challenges of this work?
Evidence of the impact of the project was captured through a range of methods including over 40 interviews with participants, museum staff, partners, creative practitioners and artists; response cards that asked participants to write their thoughts in response to the question ‘What does nature mean to you?’; and journals, in which participants in the Exchanges and Experiments were encouraged to reflect on their experiences. It was critical to foster an open, equitable and reflective environment so that participants could talk freely about their experiences. The impact of the project on participants can be found in Unexpected Encounters.