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Best of Both Worlds

By Smithsonian Institution

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By G. Wayne Clough, Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution Today’s digital revolution is providing a dizzying array of tools that offer opportunities for learning institutions all over the world to become more vibrant and accessible. This revolution provides the means to share vital information, enabling people to learn more,shape informed opinions, and make decisions in their daily lives. Suddenly, everybody can have access to information that previously was only available to the experts. Everybody can take part in the creative processes of institutions that once were not even in public view. However, this unprecedented and continuous shift has left many institutions struggling to adapt and is forcing them to rethink how to maintain their unique qualities while at the same time adding value. Today, no organization is immune to the disruptions caused by technological innovation. We at museums, libraries, and archives must ask: How can we prepare ourselves to reach the generation of digital natives who bring a huge appetite — and aptitude — for the digital world?