Interpretive Planner

Interpretive Planner

Job Information
Author gwozney
Date May 22, 2021
Deadline Open
Type Full Time
Company Canadian Museum for Human Rights
Location CAN
Category Others
Contact Information
[email protected]

Interpretive Developer (possibility of working remotely)

Canadian Museum for Human Rights

Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada


The Canadian Museum for Human Rights (CMHR) is a national museum dedicated to the evolution, celebration and future of human rights. It is the first national museum in Canada to be built outside the National Capital Region. Located in the heart of Canada in Winnipeg, Manitoba, the CMHR rises from the Prairie earth at The Forks, which has been a meeting place for over six thousand years.

The CMHR delivers an immersive, interactive and memorable experience for visitors of every background, age and ability. Each visitor has access to a fully reinvented museum experience that reflects a design approach that sets new Canadian and world standards for inclusion and universal accessibility.

We are seeking talented individuals who are motivated to share their passion and commitment to join our team. Together, we aim to enhance the public’s understanding of human rights, to promote respect for others, and to encourage reflection and dialogue.

Purpose of Position

The Canadian Museum for Human Rights (CMHR) is centered around the idea that respect and understanding of human rights can serve as a positive force for change in the world. The Interpretive Planner will collaborate with others in the organization to support our collective efforts to build a workplace culture that is inclusive, equitable, innovative and focused on inspiring action.

Reporting to the Director, Exhibitions, the Interpretive Planner performs a key role within exhibition and gallery development teams. They are a subject matter expert regarding visitor behaviours, approaches and engagement methodologies relating to exhibitions. The Interpretive Planner advocates for holistic, visitor-centered experiences across all content platforms. They work closely with curators, designers, and mixed-media developers. The incumbent will prepare exhibition interpretive plans that are aligned with innovative museum practices, encourage story-telling and dialogue, motivate visitors to learn about human rights, are in keeping with the strategic objectives established by the Board of Trustees, and fulfill the legislated mandate of the CMHR. The recommendations made by the Interpretive Planner drive the design, emotional tone and visitor flow of exhibitions.

The incumbent is responsible for gathering the collective knowledge and expertise of numerous museum disciplines (in addition to external stakeholders), and integrating this as relevant to interpretation into the exhibition development process. The incumbent will be a  strong and thoughtful communicator, critical thinker and innovator, and will bring a collaborative approach to their role.

Key Responsibilities

  • Contributes to a culture that promotes respect, equity, inclusion and innovation, and models anti-racist and accountable behaviours.
  • Creates and develops the interpretive plan for an exhibition or gallery by organizing and structuring information into an engaging and compelling narrative based on close consultation with curators and community stakeholders.
  • Selects interpretive techniques that are appropriate to the communication objectives of the exhibition/gallery and its intended audiences.
  • Initiates and leads numerous working sessions with other team members to achieve the messaging of the interpretive plan.
  • Provides input to curatorial staff on research, content development and selection of two-dimensional and three-dimensional assets.
  • Develops interpretive goals for exhibition interactives and audio-visual elements (including messaging, planning, design, prototyping, production, delivery and evaluation), working closely with multimedia, digital and audio-visual producers, and graphic and exhibition designers.
  • Participates as a member of the exhibition team throughout the design and production phases, driving and ensures that the interpretive plan and ensuring it is expressed and audience needs are represented.
  • In close coordination with the curatorial team, structures, writes and reviews interpretive texts, storyboards and scripts to ensure satisfactory level of readability, cultural sensitivity and accessibility. In collaboration with team members, ensures appropriate communication strategies are employed.
  • Assesses and incorporates features reflecting diversity and inclusion considerations.
  • Alerts and provides information to other departments (External Relations and Community Engagement, Visitor Experience and Business Development) about changes to exhibition content.
  • Processes and uses the findings from gallery and exhibition evaluations to identify opportunities for improvement.
  • Prepares interpretive planning documents, such as gallery profile sheets and project summaries and updates.
  • Responds to external exhibition proposals and tracks incoming proposals for consideration.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Required Qualifications

  • Education at the university level in museum studies or a related discipline, or an equivalent combination of education and experience in a related field.
  • Minimum of 5 years experience in interpretive planning for complex exhibition, media and technology, and display projects within a museum environment.
  • Commitment to human rights principles, including respect, equity, inclusion and dignity for all, including anti-racism.
  • Proven experience in the development and delivery of innovative interpretive methods in museum exhibitions including but not limited to passive, active, immersive and interactive experiences.
  • Previous experience with interpretive text writing for a general audience, instructional texts for exhibition interactives, script writing and storyboard development.
  • Ability to write clearly, concisely and imaginatively in the production of interpretive planning tools and exhibition labels, scripts, brochures, etc.
  • Ability to synthesize research, design, media and technology through exhibition projects into engaging content and meaningful visitor experiences for multiple audience segments.
  • Ability to integrate diverse exhibition elements into a consistent whole; knowledge of museum visitor studies and informal learning theory as applied to exhibition development.
  • Excellent listening and speaking skills for the exchange of complex information; superior written communication skills, with creativity.
  • Demonstrated innovation, creative thinking skills and ability to work successfully in a highly collaborative, creative environment.
  • Demonstrated success as a resourceful collaborator with the ability to communicate a clear vision and build relationships at all levels.
  • Strong analytical and problem-solving skills.
  • Exceptional time management skills, with the ability to work under pressure, multi-task and prioritize.

Desired Qualifications

  • Familiarity with inclusive standards as they apply to exhibition media.
  • Familiarity with the techniques of digital, three-dimensional and graphic design.
  • Working knowledge of recent findings and techniques in visitor studies and audience research.
  • Experience with media and technology-driven exhibitions.
  • Ability to communicate proficiently in both official languages.

Conditions of Employment

  • Security Screening Level – Reliability Status
  • Child Abuse Registry Check


  • Some travel required.
  • Due to the difficulty of some of the subject matter explored by the Museum, the Interpretive Planner may be exposed to high levels of mental and emotional stress.
  • Working remotely may be considered for this position.

Application Procedure

Interested applicants should submit a cover letter and résumé through CMHR’s Careers page at by June 11, 2021. The cover letter must provide concrete examples that illustrate how they meet the education and experience aspects listed in the Required and Desired Qualifications. Résumés will be used as a secondary source to validate the education and experience described in the cover letter.

The Canadian Museum for Human Rights (CMHR) believes that a diversity of experiences and thought drives innovation and transformation. We are working towards building a workforce that is representative of the community in which we live and that we serve. We are committed to providing equal employment opportunities to all and encourage you to identify your employment equity status in your cover letter. The information you voluntarily disclose will be kept confidential and used solely for the purpose of increasing workforce diversity.

The CMHR is committed to developing a work environment and recruitment processes that are inclusive and barrier-free. Please advise the HR representative if accommodation measures must be taken to enable you to apply and be assessed in a fair and equitable manner.

Intent / Result of process: An eligibility list of qualified candidates may be created as a result of this process. The list would have a retention schedule of six months.

If contacted about this job posting, please advise us if you require any accommodations regarding the interview process.

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