Results of the visitor study

Results of the visitor study

In six phases each lasting a week, almost
2,500 part-standardized questionnaires were filled out by individual visitors
and groups. For the first time, school classes were also included into the
survey in an additional week.

Choosing the visitors to take part in the
survey was done on a sample basis in an effort to gain representative results.
The questionnaires were in nine languages. It emerged that around two-thirds of
those surveyed are from abroad, most of them from Europe (64%) or North America
(22%). Comparing countries, most of the visitors are from Italy (26%), followed
by the USA (19%). The remaining visitors from abroad are spread across Asia
(5%), Australia/New Zealand (5%), South America (2.5%), Israel (0.9%), and
Africa (0.5%). In contrast to an earlier study from 2007, there is a
distinctive rise in the number of visitors from Asia.

The questionnaire requested from the
respondents an assessment of individual areas in the museum, for instance the
exhibition panels, the documentary film as well as further information sources
and services. Moreover, the visitors were asked about the quality of the tours
and the audio guides. Another focal point was to ask about visitor behavior,
i.e. how long they stayed at the Memorial Site and which areas did they focus
on during their stay. Of key importance for the Memorial Site was to find out
the level of prior knowledge visitors had, the mindset and expectations they
brought with them, as well as their socio-demographic details.

The base data identified in this study was
compiled and summarized by Waltraud Burger and Rebecca Ribarek. Their articles
have since been published in Museum heute
(issue 48, December 2015) and in Gedenkstättenrundbrief
(no. 177, 03/2015). The study also served as the basis for the survey conducted on the barracks exhibition
in 2015. A full publication of the results is currently being planned.