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CAJM 2015: Open Source

The 2015 CAJM Conference, Open Source: Jewish Museums and Collaborative Culture, convened in San Francisco, March 8-10, 2015. Taking our inspiration from the Bay Area's leadership in technology, the program focused on the process of open collaboration in which a variety of contributors (each with agendas and needs) work in parallel to develop a new service or product. "Open Source" served as metaphor for our field, responsive both to our local communities and global trends.

Review the conference program.

The 2015 conference explored how, in a hyper-connected world, audience expectations for maximum participation and shared authority impact our exhibitions, programs, collections, fund-raising, marketing, personnel skills, and strategies. An array of pace-setting thinkers and practitioners shared new models of participatory programming, civic engagement, and strategic collaboration, punctuated by presentations from artists, writers, and performers.

The conference also provided an opportunity to explore resources and collections at several CAJM museums in the San Francisco Bay Area, plus other notable cultural institutions and landmarks.

KassofCAJM Board members Anita Kassof (left) and Marsha Semmel (below left) served as Co-Chairs for the three-day gathering.  Kassof, Executive Director of the Baltimore Museum of Industry and former Deputy Director at the Museum of Jewish Heritage in New York and former Associate Director of the Jewish Museum of Maryland, also co-chaired our 2013 NYC conference. (Photo credit: Melanie Einzig)

SemmelSemmel, Senior Advisor at the Noyce Leadership Institute, previously directed numerous programs at the Institute for Museum and Library Services and the National Endowment for the Humanities, and was President and CEO of the Women of the West Museum and Conner Prairie.

Host institutions for the conference were the Contemporary Jewish Museum in San Francisco and the Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life at the University of California, Berkeley. We are most grateful to them and to the funders listed at left. 

The CJM at night