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The Museum’s collection management, research, exhibitions and programs aim to achieve the outcome of increasing awareness and understanding of Australia’s history and culture. The Museum does this by:

  • conducting activities to ensure it has a relevant and high quality collection of objects and associated material. This includes maintaining the collection in appropriate condition, and ensuring it is available to be used in exhibitions and other programs
  • conducting activities that allow visitors to access objects in the collection, or information about objects and Australian history and cultures, through the provision of exhibitions and programs online in Australia and overseas
  • undertaking research to enhance awareness of Australian history and cultures, and maintaining a print and web publishing program for the public.

The annual PBS specify performance measures for the Museum for acquisitions, storage of the National Historical Collection, conservation treatments, documentation of the collection, access to the collection and visitor satisfaction levels.

Performance summary

In 2012–13, the Office for the Arts introduced a set of standard key performance indicators for those cultural institutions within the Regional Australia, Local Government, Arts and Sport portfolio.

No.Key performance indicator



1.1.1Number of paid on-site visits44,11142,948
1.1.2Number of unpaid on-site visits



1.2.2Number of on-site visits by preschool students



1.2.3Number of on-site visits by primary school students



1.2.4Number of on-site visits by secondary school students



1.2.5Number of on-site visits by post-secondary education students



1.3.1Number of visits to the website



1.3.2Number of page views to the website3,036,0003,343,891
1.4Number of off-site visits to the organisation (travelling exhibitions)175,00085,186
3.1Number of formal overseas initiatives44
3.2Number of other overseas initiatives400174
4.1Operational funding (as a % of total funds from operations and government)86%86%
4.2Capital funding from government (as a % of total funds from operations and government)4%4%
4.3Cash sponsorship income (as a % of total funds from operations and government)--
4.4Other cash fundraising income (as a % of total funds from operations and government)--
4.5Other income (as a % of total funds from operations and government)10%10%
5.1Expenditure on collection development (as a % of total expenditure)13%12%
5.2Expenditure on other capital items (as a % of total expenditure)16%18%
5.3Expenditure on other (i.e. non-collection development) labour costs (as a % of total expenditure)32%31%
5.4Other expenses (as a % of total expenditure)41%39%
7.1.1Number of acquisitions in the reporting period17002419
7.2.1Total number of objects accessioned in the reporting period900821
7.2.2Total number of objects awaiting accessioning at the end of the reporting period12,00012,798
7.2.3% of total objects (acquired in the reporting period) accessioned5%<1%
7.3.1% of total collection available to the public47%46%
7.3.2% of total collection available to the public online42%42.5%
7.3.3% of total collection available to the public on display4%3%
7.3.4% of total collection available to the public on tour1%≤1%
7.4.1% of total objects assessed/condition checked in the reporting period1.3%2.53%
7.4.2% of total objects conserved in the reporting period for preparation for display or digitisation0.1%0.37%
7.4.3% of total objects treated for preservation purposes only in the reporting period0.2%1.54%
7.5% of the total collection digitised54%85%
8.1Number of people participating in public programs25,64027,541
8.2Number of people participating in school programs84,30087,263
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