As an expert in your field, you probably read a lot about your area of expertise. Sharing links to what you have read can be a valuable knowledge-sharing activity for your colleagues. However, sharing alone does not add any value and only becomes meaningful when you add your own knowledge and context to show the relevance and usefulness of the links. This is what we call “curation.”
What’s in it for you?
Content curation involves finding, grouping, organizing and sharing the best content on a specific subject or domain. By curating and sharing the most relevant and thought-provoking content, you establish yourself as an authority or thought leader in your area of expertise.
Learn from museums
The term “curation” originates in the world of museums. A curator is the manager of a museum’s collection who selects and arranges the various pieces to be exhibited. Often, he or she borrows works from other museums or private collectors. How does a curator decide what to select and how to organize an exhibition?
Curation: The search
Let’s assume you are the curator of a museum and you are creating an exhibition of Rembrandt paintings. Imagine you have been asked to exhibit every existing Rembrandt painting. If you put them all up side by side, you would end up with something like this:
This is not curation. It’s more like a search result! (like a Google Images search, which is where this picture actually comes from).
The first step in curation is to select the works/pieces to be displayed. Selection is carried out with a reason: there are criteria or rationales behind each choice. As a Rembrandt curator, you need to identify your selection criteria and tell a story based on that.