Heritage reloaded: how can an incubator, mixing start-ups and a cultural institution, reshape the future of cultural experiences?

Lightning Talk

Saturday, April 04, 2020: 2:00pm - 3:30pm -

Bettina Gardelles, Centre des monuments nationaux, France

In the digital age, where new partnerships and collaborative thinking are key to any structure, how can cultural institutions adapt? How can they ensure that they are linked with their ecosystem and benefit from it? Can a century-old institution keep the pace of a fast-changing environment? The Centre des monuments nationaux, a leading cultural institution in France, managing 100 monuments and welcoming 9 million visitors a year, addressed that issue by creating an incubator in June 2018. The program adds to a grant and personalized coaching the opportunity for the start-ups to experiment live their offer. The CMN offers its 100 monuments as a playground for newly created companies to test their concept.
What is at stake here is to cocreate new disruptive offers, introducing new techniques (such as artificial intelligence or cutting edge VR) that the institution could not bring in without the support of innovative companies. With the start-ups, the cultural institution proves its ability to reinvent itself.

Complementary resources on the project  :

The first promotion:

Akatimi: digitalization and 3D reconstitution

Akken: immersive experiences through connected objects

Ask Mona: development of chatbots (artificial intelligence)

Be-my-Space: teleworking in exceptional settings

Ce que mes yeux ont vu: an on line art sound library designed for visually impaired people

Realcast: interactive and educational visits with augmented reality

Studio Sherlock: documenting monuments during their renovation in a playful way


Realcast recreated VR experience                          Akken “connected confidant” (connected textile)

The second promotion:

Bryanthings: photobooth to enhance crowdfunding

Explorama: Highlights heritage and nature through games and tresure hunts

Foxie: Immersive and goeolocated games

Intenscity: digital lightings for frontages and energy savings

OhZ Masterclass: micro learning via podcast

PicNic: Kiosks in renewable energies

Phygit’ales: combining print and digital thanks to augmented reality

La Réserve des Arts: recovering waste and exhibition materials to give them a second life

“Incubateur du Patrimoine” on social media :




Press review (in French) :