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Carrie Wiltshire, Interpretation & Display Coordinator, Centre for Alternative Technology

Case Studies

Client Issue
Centre for Alternative Technology Evaluation of the CAT Visitor Centre

The Centre for Alternative Technology (CAT) is concerned with the search for globally sustainable, whole and ecologically sound technologies and ways of life. Its role is to explore and demonstrate a wide range of alternatives, communicating to other people the options for them to achieve positive change in their own lives. One of the main forms of communication is an interactive visitor centre located in a disused slate mine located near Machynlleth in North Wales.  

We were originally commissioned in 2004 to carry out an evaluation of the CAT Visitor Centre in order to understand and describe the nature of the visitor experience and inform the development of new displays. This involved observations with follow up interviews during the course of a visit and a number of focus groups with visitors towards the end of their stay. Our findings were used to help identify key exhibits for redevelopment as well as providing guidelines to help shape this redevelopment.  

In 2007, we were invited to return and carry out a further evaluation to explore the impact of three new exhibits. Using a similar methodology as before, we were able to identify how well the new exhibits were performing as well as make recommendations for making the communication of the CAT message even more effective.

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