The greatest threat that museums are facing in different parts of the world, including Egypt, is that museums no longer have the capacity to sustain themselves and their activities. Therefore, museums are in need to change the way they function to become more sustainable. New models for museums seek to give power to its visitors. A Visitor-centric approach in museums ultimately focuses on providing a product and a service which is compatible with the needs and expectations of visitors. This research represents an initial step in analyzing the relationship between customer-satisfaction and the quality of the education service on one hand and the concept of social sustainability on the other. These are three areas through which museums are expected to achieve the intended development. The study aims to evaluate visitorsâ€™ experience, which study also proposes a definition and measurement scale for social sustainability of the museum, and examines the relationship between visitorsâ€™ experience and the level of social sustainability. The proposed framework was empirically tested on the Egyptian Geological museum. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with the museumâ€™s management team and staff that helped in constructing a perspective about the museum, gaining information about the museumâ€™s vision, mission, services, visitor numbers and demographics. A survey questionnaire was developed and administered to respondents among three hundred of the Egyptian Geological museum visitors. The survey was composed of three instruments: 1) the Servqual instrument, which measures the level of satisfaction of museum visitors with the quality of the service, including their experiences and perceptions; 2) the knowledge instrument, which assess the change a visitor knowledge; 3) and the subjective visitor perceptions of the social sustainability of the museum. The study findings carry important implications for the museumâ€™s management, with specific actionable recommendations in key areas such as: strategic marketing, communication and service. Findings revealed that better the service quality as perceived by the customer, the greater the customer satisfaction with the core service. Findings showed that the better the quality of educational service as perceived by customers, the greater the museums social sustainability. On the scientific level, the study is a preliminary attempt to deepen understanding and measurement of an important construct in the sustainability field, namely social sustainability. The study points the way toward a promising approach for fostering the sustainable development of museums by providing a conceptual framework that integrates the services marketing and sustainability literature. Finally, the study alludes to important policy implications that may inform government decisions regarding national museums.
MS in Sustainable Development
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Seoudi Iman, & Sewilam Hani
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(2016).A visitor-centric Approach to Socially Sustainable Museums: The Egyptian Geological Museum [Master’s thesis, the American University in Cairo]. AUC Knowledge Fountain.
El-Adawy, Eman. A visitor-centric Approach to Socially Sustainable Museums: The Egyptian Geological Museum. 2016. American University in Cairo, Master's thesis. AUC Knowledge Fountain.