F. Concluding Recommendations With Regard to Implementation
The Commission is aware of the already extensive history of commission reports that have served only to fill bookshelf space -- no more. Quite naturally, this is one line of history to which this Commission would prefer not to add. With that concern in mind, the Commission offers these additional recommendations, which are intended to increase the chances that the foregoing Commission recommendations may have operational effect.
RECOMMENDATION (16) re: SEARCH FOR NEW DIRECTOR
RECOGNIZING THAT THE NEW NMAH DIRECTOR WILL BE, PERHAPS, THE SINGLE MOST IMPORTANT INDIVIDUAL IN SHAPING THE MUSEUM'S TRANSFORMATION, THE COMMISSION RESPECTFULLY RECOMMENDS THAT THE SEARCH COMMITTEE BE DIRECTED AS FOLLOWS:
RECOMMENDATION (17) re: ALIGNMENT OF VIEWS
RECOGNIZING THAT THE NEW DIRECTOR WILL REQUIRE THE SUPPORT OF THOSE ABOVE AND BELOW HIM OR HER IN A LARGE INSTITUTIONAL BUREAUCRACY, THE SECRETARY AND THE BOARD SHOULD ATTEMPT TO ASSURE THAT:
RECOMMENDATION (18) re: DIRECTOR'S TENURE
RECOGNIZING THAT A TRANSFORMATION STRATEGY THAT IS WORTH PURSUING WILL TAKE MANY YEARS TO IMPLEMENT, THE SECRETARY, THE REGENTS, AND THE BOARD SHOULD CONSIDER THE IMPLICATIONS OF THIS REQUIREMENT FOR POSSIBLE TERMS, PERFORMANCE OBJECTIVES, AND INCENTIVES IN THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE NEW DIRECTOR'S CONTRACT.
RECOMMENDATION (19) re: BALANCE TESTS
RECOGNIZING THAT THE COMMISSION'S RECOMMENDED PRINCIPLES FOR ASSURING EXHIBIT BALANCE ARE ABSTRACT, AND THAT THE PROCESS OF DEVELOPING INDIVIDUAL EXHIBITS IS LONG AND DYNAMIC, NMAH SHOULD STRUCTURE AN APPROPRIATE ADVISORY REVIEW MECHANISM TO ASSURE THAT THE TESTS OF BALANCE ARE REASONABLY ADDRESSED AT AN INTERMEDIATE REVIEW STAGE IN THE COURSE OF EXHIBIT DEVELOPMENT.
RECOMMENDATION (20) re: MONITORING
THE SECRETARY SHOULD REQUIRE THE ACTING DIRECTOR AND NEW DIRECTOR TO REPORT TO THE BOARD AND THE SECRETARY AS FOLLOWS:
In being educated about the Museum, and in preparing to draft this report, the Commission has been aided throughout by NMAH staff. They have been highly professional, consistently cooperative, and unfailingly constructive. Members of the Commission wish to express formally their appreciation, respect, and thanks for the excellent support afforded to the Commission by NMAH staff.
The Commission has concluded its deliberations with great respect for NMAH's extraordinary strengths; with a deeper appreciation for the complexity of the challenges facing the Museum; and with confidence that, as the problems identified here are addressed, NMAH will not only remain a fundamentally important national treasure. It will also be a museum of the very highest quality: aesthetically appealing, intellectually responsible, thematically interesting, educationally effective -- a worthy focus of compelling interest and a justifiable source of national pride.