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Tweeting about the Future

Category: Center for the Future Of Museums Blog
Hello future peeps. I’m enormously encouraged by the reception for TrendsWatch 2017. People have been sending me links to great articles related to this year’s topics (empathy, criminal justice reform, artificial intelligence, migration & refugees, and productive failure) and I’ve scheduled a super roster of guest posts about related work.

I’ve also been collecting Twitter accounts that consistently deliver good content around these trends. I embed some of the stories I find through these accounts into CFM’s free weekly e-newsletter Dispatches from the Futureof Museums, and this week I created Twitter lists so you can follow these sources directly, if you like. I’ve chosen accounts that devote a large majority of their content to the relevant topic, tend to embed links to resources or highlight upcoming events, and retweet good stuff. I favor organizational over individual accounts to minimize the incidence of off-topic personal tweets.
Here are links to the lists, together with some highlights from each. I will expand and tailor these lists throughout the year—please please please use the comment section (below) or tweet me @futureofmuseums to suggest accounts you recommend I add to any of the themes!


This list is anchored by the tweets of the Empathy Museum, and includes a range of interesting programs around the world including the Center for Empathy in International Affairs, EmpathyLabUK, and a classroom program dedicated to reducing bullying and aggression called Roots of Empathy.

Skip over related stories to continue reading article

Criminal Justice Reform

I am a fan of the Equal Justice Initiative (their founder and director, Bryan Stevenson, will be a featured speaker at the AAM annual meeting in May.) I also find consistently good content in the feed of The Marshal Project, a nonprofit newsroom that covers the US criminal justice system. Criminal justice reform is a global issue,  and the list also includes the feeds of Penal Reform International and the International Commission of Jurists

Artificial Intelligence

There are a lot of Twitter accounts that mix interesting news about AI in with other tech and futurist topics, but I’ve found relatively few that are primarily about AI. This list includes the official feed of the IBM Watson project, as well as the AI Newsletter, The Coming Future and a few others. I hope you can help me identify some feeds I should add.

Migration and Refugees

Many rich, informative Twitter feeds focus on migration and refugees. I’ve picked a selection that take a variety of approaches to the topic: data and storytelling; US and international; news and policy. The list includes the feeds of the Migration Museum UK and the Migration Museum of South Australia, as well as several feeds associated with the United Nations. I’ve also added the official feed of the Refugee Olympic Team, which I have followed since they first competed in the Rio Olympics last year.  

Failing Forward (the rise of agile design)

I’m having a hard time building a good Twitter list around this topic, which encompasses the productive use of failure as well as practices such as design thinking and agile design that use small, rapid failures to improve outcomes. I started with the feed of Dana Mitroff Silvers, who does a lot of design thinking work with museums, and added a few groups such as the Stanford and OpenIdeo that work in this area, but the feed is still a little thin. I hope you can suggest some good feeds to beef up this list.

If you haven’t got a Twitter account, I hope this post inspires you to dip a toe in the twittersphere. Used selectively, it’s a great way to participate in conversations about a variety of topics and make connections around the globe. 

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