Comparative research into the museum governance systems of national museums in the UK and Taiwan
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This research is a pioneering study focusing on the museum governance system. Governance in museums has been under-researched; however, recent disputes and development have drawn the public’s attention to this subject. Furthermore, there is still no proper theory or model to explain the decision- and policy- making process in museums. Regarding the scope of this thesis, a focus on national museums of the UK and Taiwan has been chosen because of their historical similarities. A literature review was conducted to aim at answering the question of ‘what is governance?’, including its definition and theories, not only in the private sector, but also in the public and non-profit sectors. Museum governance has been identified and compared with the application of marketing and management as well as museology. It was also significant to investigate the historical development of museum governance in the two selected countries. It has enabled the author to find out the most influential factors in the governance systems of museums and create a preliminary model. Six national museums were selected as cases and three trips of fieldwork were achieved in a period of more than a year. A background analysis of each case provided a fundamental understanding of their history, organisational structure and importance. Data collected was later analysed in detail and compared, to understand governance practices as well as to test the proposed model. This has proved that the Interactive Model of museum governance helps to explain the governance process in the museum; however, a minor change has also been made to refine this model. A further literature review was conducted to update the information and also to ensure the originality of this research. There are some suggestions for future research on this subject, and it is the hope of the author to have widened interest in museum governance both in academia and among museum professionals.
Thesis, PhD Doctor of Philosophy
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