Leading Innovation at Kelvingrove (a)

Jeanne Liedtka

University of Virginia - Darden School of Business

Darden Case No. UVA-S-0162

This case series explores the leadership story of director Mark O’Neill as he oversees a major innovation initiative at Kelvingrove, Scotland’s most visited museum. The A case describes his background, philosophy, and the actions he takes over a period of more than a decade to win the support of both staff and funders for the innovation. The B case examines the reaction of the public and art critics. O’Neill arrives at Kelvingrove to find an institution in turmoil after a series of dramatic changes that have alienated visitors and funders alike. Utilizing an innovative style of management that he describes as “maze behavior,� he succeeds in moving the traditionally discipline-bound, curator-dominated museum into a cross-disciplinary, visitor-oriented experience. He does this by engaging the curators in creating exhibits based on stories rather than professional classification schemes such as paintings, geology, etc., using an approach that includes a deep understanding of his audience and the imaginative use of forms. He also gains the community’s political and funding support to accomplish his goals.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 16

Keywords: nonprofit organizations, strategic planning, innovation

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Date posted: April 5, 2010  

Suggested Citation

Liedtka, Jeanne, Leading Innovation at Kelvingrove (a). Darden Case No. UVA-S-0162. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1584555

Contact Information

Jeanne Liedtka (Contact Author)
University of Virginia - Darden School of Business ( email )
P.O. Box 6550
Charlottesville, VA 22906-6550
United States
804-924-1404 (Phone)
804-924-6378 (Fax)
HOME PAGE: http://www.darden.virginia.edu/faculty/liedtka.htm

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