The Challenge of Change. Museum practice informed by and informing the peace process

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Contemplating retirement from his university post, in 2021 Belfast-born museum practitioner and academic Graham Black published what he said would be his final book: Museums and the Challenge of Change Old Institutions in a New World. This chapter brings together those two challenges: the sometimes-difficult shifts in museum purpose that are running in parallel with the continuing challenges of the peace process. It explores the shifts in method that are key to explaining the character of the connection between museums and the peace process. The first is the wider epistemological shift in Western museum practice, leading to an idea of museums becoming more participatory and audience-led. As museums change, people see the rise of the community museum and greater community engagement with the offer provided by established museums. The second influence is the shifting demands of Northern Ireland peace process requesting that every sector pulls together with the shared goal of building a resilient society that can navigate challenge peacefully.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Routledge Handbook of the Northern Ireland Conflict and Peace
EditorsMcAtackney Laura, Máirtín Ó Catháin
PublisherRoutledge Taylor & Francis Group
Number of pages14
ISBN (Electronic)9781000957730
ISBN (Print)ISBN 9781032124001
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 26 Sept 2023


  • Museum
  • Northern Ireland
  • Troubles
  • Peace Process
  • Conflict
  • Heritage
  • Memory


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