Tuesday, July 29, 2008

What Happened to the "Science" in Science Museums?

Karen Heller wrote an interesting article in the Philadelphia Inquirer recently about "The Franklin" (formerly known as The Franklin Institute, before its "rebranding.")

Let's just say it wasn't pretty. She bemoaned the museum's lack of science in it's glitzy offerings and equated the museum's exhibit areas with a casino.

For the most part, I'd say Ms. Heller's article could have just as easily been describing most of the "big" science centers (like those in Boston, or L.A., for example.) The emphasis seems to be on quick, flashy ways to bring people in and sell them junk from the gift shop(s), and downplaying, almost apologizing for, the science.

Is this what happens when the only bottom line is the "bottom line"? Take the time to read Heller's article (note especially the responses to the poll questions about The Franklin) and let us know what you think in the "Comments Section" below.

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