Museum Geography: Exploring Museums, Collections and Museum Practice in the UK



In the UK alone there are more than 2500 museums of interest to international and home audiences. Despite their prevalence and a strong museological culture in the UK and beyond, the geographic study of museums is relatively under-developed. To date there has been no systematic overview of this field either in the UK or internationally. This review article is intended as a contribution towards an emerging ‘museum geography’. Beginning with an exploration of research on museums, collections and museum practice, the author then considers the recent ‘spatial turn’ in museum studies and discusses how geographers have variously encountered museums, collections and museum practice to date. The article then reviews the potential for the future study of museums by geographers. In so doing, the author suggests that the study of museums offers some exciting opportunities for geographical research and teaching.