Evolving the Mouse Exchange
The Mouse Exchange has gone through many iterations since Paul and Sara sat at the Nightingale building at the University of Southampton and invited people to come and make a mouse. The Mouse Exchange evolved and grew through experimenting and listening.
This is why the colonies look different. The earliest colonies were just about the making mice which were taken home by the participants. Then we realised we could use the passport to ask better questions. We redesigned the passports what each mouse was like and to capture ideas about who should care for the mice and how and about hopes for the future.
We then wanted to bring in more of our research and introduced new tools to help expand conversations and make the experience more playful. These included the ear punch (for genotyping), the biobank (for freezing embryos) and the infinity box (for cloning and expanding the colony).
Now we mix and match all these tools and approaches depending on when, where and by who the next colony is being made.