Online collaboration in the Victorian Regional Gallery Network

Harley, J 2005, Online collaboration in the Victorian Regional Gallery Network, Masters by Research, Property, Construction and Project Management, RMIT University.

Document type: Thesis
Collection: Theses

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Title Online collaboration in the Victorian Regional Gallery Network
Author(s) Harley, J
Year 2005
Abstract The research seeks to identify the opportunities online collaboration may deliver to the Victorian Regional Gallery Network (VRGN). The research further seeks to identify the Commonwealth and Victorian State Government policy context that contributes to realising these opportunities and the type of eBusiness models that could be applied to the online environment of the Victorian Regional Gallery Network.

The problem statement of the research argues that in order for the Victorian Regional Gallery Network (VRGN) to remain sustainable in the long term, it must develop collaborations within and external to the gallery sector to deliver value adding solutions for income generation and to cultural product, while seeking new business opportunities offered by the use of Information Technology and the Internet. The range of products offered by the galleries and their geographical distribution encourages collaborations to be undertaken, and in doing so, serves the customers of the VRGN who are increasingly becoming users of the Internet and who are expecting content online. Failing to consider the changing factors that online technologies present for conducting business and communicating common issues across the sector as a whole, puts the VRGN at risk of becoming redundant to its consumers (audience/customers), and a liability to its stakeholders.

The major research question is as follows:

How can the Victorian Regional Gallery Network (VRGN), as a provider in the cultural and entertainment sector, deliver cultural product to its audiences (customers) through the use and application of collaborative online networks and their related e-business technologies?

The research seeks to address this question by investigating the 14 regional galleries that comprise the Victorian Regional Gallery Network, by reviewing their operations and relationships with their stakeholders, and by suggesting a variety of electronic business models that may assist in engaging in collaborative online networks.

The scope of the research has three broad objectives:

1. the analysis of the role, function and activity of the Victorian Government in supporting collaborative online networks 2. the identification of an appropriate collaboration model that uses eBusiness and that can be applied to the VRGN 3. the analysis of the typical operating environment of the VRGN and the minimum requirements that will enable the implementation of a collaborative online network

At the heart of the research therefore is an understanding of the factors that contribute to a collaborative online network, so that the galleries and the VRGN can efficiently and competitively conduct business and communicate common issues amongst its members.

The case study design was selected, as the researcher systematically gathered in-depth information on a single entity, i.e., the VRGN. The methodology deployed in the research needed to effectively gather and collect relevant information from a variety of sources within the VRGN and hence two main approaches were utilised. The first was a questionnaire using the Likert and Dichotomous scale to collect data regarding the operations of the gallery, and the second included a series of interviews which were developed to address specific questions to the key staff within the main target groups of the research.

The conclusions that can be drawn out of the combined research include:

i. The use of internet technology by the VRGN does not appear to be limited by technical issues. This provides a technological foundation on which to develop possible I.T. and collaborative online solutions for the VRGN

ii. The technology required to develop collaboration in the first instance is not a barrier to implementation as it is common technology

iii. Knowledge of the characteristics of collaboration including understanding the dynamics of trust, communication, equality, strategic alliances, knowledge distribution, negotiations and incentives are essential if it is to effectively and productively occur in the gallery network. The findings of the research indicate that collaboration currently occurs in the galleries, but it is also hampered by a culture that can sometimes work against the sector as a whole. The creation of strategic alliances amongst the galleries has also been found to be successful, but the advantages of these alliances are yet to be realised or tested across the VRGN

iv. A Collaborative Online Network model has been proposed which may enable the gallery sector to share information, encourage communication, coordinate training and professional development opportunities and develop sector-wide research and development projects. The development of the collaborative online network would also assist in addressing the core issue of the research question concerning the provision of cultural product to state audiences through an online environment, and providing incentives to reduce cost and share resources

v. The eBusiness model that will assist the VRGN in remaining competitive and active could use the Online Sales model, and will have the opportunity to exploit vertical aggregation of the Victorian arts industry to develop a portal or 'vortal' where the VRGN and its products and services can be marketed on a singular basis to the internet audience. The Online Sales Model also assists in developing a revenue stream for the galleries which may assist in its long term sustainability
Degree Masters by Research
Institution RMIT University
School, Department or Centre Property, Construction and Project Management
Keyword(s) Online
Victorian regional gallery network
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Created: Mon, 29 Nov 2010, 16:09:00 EST by Catalyst Administrator
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