Museums, touristic attractions, IT specialists and research institutions from Poland, Denmark, Sweden, Lithuania and Germany, cooperate in the project ‘BalticMuseums: Love IT!’. The nine project partners and eight associated partners will create IT-enabled tools for natural and cultural heritage attractions in the South Baltic Region. Led by the University of Szczecin, the project consortium will establish a brand to jointly promote the developed gamified services for visitors. The three-year project is co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund in the Interreg South Baltic Programme with about 1.2 million Euros, and has a total project budget of 1.5 million Euros.
BYOD Tours (Bring Your Own Device)
The project team will set up multilingual tours to be run on the visitors’ own devices (e.g. smartphones) that they bring to the attractions. Addressing the trend of gamification, the project will use game elements to make the visitors’ experience more involving, and extend the single visit into long-term relationships. Working with a user-centric design process of the new products, the project will involve the target group into the development. IT enthusiasts will be invited to special programming events (so-called ‘hackathon’) taking place directly in the touristic attractions. The creative ideas generated during these events will be further developed into fully fledged gamified apps later on.
The exchange of experiences amongst the partners involving visitors and users to create IT supported touristic offers forms the basis of the project. The team will work with approaches of User Experience and Generic Learning Outcomes and develop as well as share knowledge regarding digital strategies for attractions, insights in working with digital natives, (video) storytelling or understanding concepts of motivation and loyalty. Experiences made during the project e.g. in setting up hackathons will be captured. The gained knowledge of the partners will be made available on an online platform, for the benefit of other destinations and attractions.
BRAND & NETWORK
A brand will be introduced to make the new gamified products better recognizable and marketable. The project consortium encourages other attractions to make use of the tools, the findings and the brand developed as part of ‘BalticMuseums: Love IT!’ – aiming at forming a sustainable cross-border network of tourist attractions and destinations for a continuous exchange on IT-enabled services and digital strategies.
Some of the project partners have been cooperating since 2008. The application of IT-enabled services in museums and attractions is nowadays a quality attribute. The major challenge is the rapid development of both technology and consumer expectations. To turn this challenge into an opportunity, the project will develop inspiring, though practical solutions within the core team, however, as well for the benefit of other attractions outside of the project.
Attractions love IT and visitors love it!