3:30 p.m. to 4:15 p.m.

Your Next Social Enterprise
or, How MICE Can Help Your Museum

Cynthia Klaassen, Manager and Director, Studio Bell (National Music Centre)


About the Session


Image courtesy of Cynthia Klaassen. 

The COVID-19 pandemic has put sustainable funding at risk for most of Alberta's museums and historic sites. The lack of visitors and on-site activities has resulted in a precipitous drop in revenue, and the nature of future government funding is uncertain. Now that there is light at the end of the tunnel as vaccines are rolling out, museums and historic sites have an opportunity to re-set the stage and look for new social enterprise opportunities to secure earned revenue in support of operations and programming.

One such avenue is through hosting private events, and this session will focus on how museums and historic sites can tap into a segment of the global events business often referred to as the MICE market: Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, and Exhibitions. With tangible takeaways encouraging participants to consider the adaptability of their own spaces, this session will inspire museums and heritage institutions to consider new and creative ways of inviting local communities to their site to build a sustainable operation as we move towards reopening.


Questions to Consider

  • What is your future operational funding model?
  • Which communities do you feel are underrepresented in your visitor demographic?
  • Who could be your next local partner?


About the Speaker


Cynthia Klaassen
she / her

As a Manager and Director at Studio Bell, home of the National Music Centre (NMC), Cynthia developed and shaped the successful operations of three major areas of business: ticketing, retail and venue rentals. Prior to her tenure with NMC, Cynthia was the Visitor Services Manager at Fort Calgary. Her success in the museum field was built on her over-16-year tenure at a major Canadian bank, where she held numerous positions including Programmer, Project Manager, and Director of Client Relationships. Cynthia won the Governor General award in 2012 as co-chair of the "Century Homes Calgary" project, which inspired over 500 local homeowners to research and celebrate the history of their home. As an advocate and enthusiast of built heritage, she champions brutalist architecture through 'brutal' walking tours. Cynthia holds a Bachelor of Music degree and an MA in the History of Art.





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