The Art and Science of Curation

Curators and curating are at the heart of what makes us museums, yet the word curator is freely used in many contexts and with many meanings.  As a cross-disciplinary museum consortium, we find that across the University of Cambridge Museums our common recognition of the overriding importance of curation is not necessarily matched by a shared understanding of the role and responsibilities of a curator.   Is a curator a source of specialist expertise, a custodian, a content manager, a cultural programmer, a digital archivist, an editor?  All these, or none of them?  What does the curator of a fossil collection have in common with a contemporary art curator, or the curator of a music festival?   Where does community curation, co-curation, digital curation and crowd curation fit?