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Quirky ‘Museum of Failure’ celebrates creativity and innovation

November 29, 2021

Summary

Sam West, a psychologist who studies corporate behavior, believes fear of failure is a big obstacle to innovation. He launched an exhibit in Sweden in 2017 showcasing botched products and ideas to celebrate the role failure plays in innovation and progress. NewsHour Weekend Special Correspondent Megan Thompson recently visited The Museum of Failure, which is now on tour in the United States.

Five Facts

  • What is the “Museum of Failure”?
  • Who founded the museum and why?
  • How is failure a normal part of the creative process, according to Sam West?
  • What are some examples of major failures mentioned in this piece?
  • What is the “real obstacle to innovation,” according to West?

Focus Questions

Sam West says that if people “don’t take meaningful risks, there will be no progress.” How do you think institutions such as schools, businesses and the government can support meaningful risk taking, including those that might lead to failure?

Media literacy: Why do you think the producers decided to highlight this particular museum?

For More

For classroom activities and lessons on the power that invention has in solving the world’s problems, see this collection.


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