Elsa cares for the technology collection which comprises civil and mechanical engineering, industries such as mining and textiles, office and domestic technology and her particular specialism which is the energy collection. This ranges from eighteenth century steam engines to cutting edge renewable energy technologies. She recently led the development of the new energy gallery Energise which opened as part of a major redevelopment project in 2016.
Elsa’s research interests include: energy technology and the politics and sociology of technology; contemporary science and technology collecting practices; and the history of the museum’s civil engineering collections.
Elsa gained her MSc Science & Technology Studies from the University of Edinburgh, her dissertation focused on the relationship between National Museums Scotland and the nuclear energy industry during the process of decommissioning. She holds a PGDip Museum & Gallery Studies from the University of St Andrews and prior to this gained MA (Hons) Archaeology from the University of Glasgow.
Elsa sits on the steering committee for the Scottish Transport and Industry Collections Knowledge network (STICK) and the Dounreay Heritage Advisory Panel. She is a committee member for Recognised Collections of National Significance and a Fellow of the Royal Scottish Society of Arts (RSSA). She is also Chair of the Scottish branch of the Newcomen Society: the international society for the history of engineering and technology.
For further publications see: National Museums Scotland Research Repository.