Transformational Experiences at the Experimentarium: Learning by Doing

Mette Kofoed Iversen

Student thesis: Master thesis


The Transformation Economy is augured to be the economic offering of future business, and the Experimentarium in Copenhagen has for years been abreast of this tendency of transformational experiences. The aim of this thesis is to explore the experience at the Experimentarium, and to what extent the experience is transformative as well as how transformational offerings can be used to differentiate from competitors. The theoretical foundation is primarily based on Kristensen (2009a; 2012; 2009b) and Pine & Gilmore (1999), in combination with theory on conceptual consumption, consumer motivation, pleasures of the mind, learning and co-creation. Through different methods of qualitative research, the consumers are being investigated in order to explore their experience and whether learning leads to transformation. Since transformations are built on experiences, the research also investigates how the experience can be optimized. Learning is defined to be the precondition for transformations, and the exhaustive research has revealed that the majority of the respondents expected to learn something during their visit, and more than half also believed they had learned something new. The recommendations of this thesis is to focus more on the guidance of the consumers and involve the already existing guides in the dialogue with the visitors, in order to help them across obstacles in the direction of transformation and secure fluency and flow in the experience. By implementing guidance through i.e. smart phones, the sense of “the individual exhibition” will be increased, and this kind of intelligent guidance can be constantly at hand and secure a positive experience. To optimize the experience more immersive elements in terms of esthetic and escapist experiences should be offered. They will ensure elements of immersion and stimulate all senses and thus fulfil the essence of Pine & Gilmore’s “sweet spot” and the “gesamt kunstwerk” concept. The united experience must reflect the essence of the Experimentarium and provide room for activity as well as relaxation and time and space for reflection and settlement of the experience. As something new within the transformation theory, this thesis has demonstrated that the learning obtained at the Experimentarium is often not recognized until some time after the actual moment of experience in a specific situation where the learning becomes relevant. In other words, the actual transformation may not occur until weeks or months after the actual experience.

EducationsMSc in Brand and Communications Management, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2013
Number of pages243