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Research and museology

Research and scholarship are central to the National Museum of Australia's collection, exhibitions, publications and other activities. This research includes Australian history, care of its collection and museological areas including audience, evaluation and outreach. The establishment of the Research Centre has consolidated the study of Australian history and museum issues. 


Research Centre

The National Museum of Australia's Research Centre fosters new thinking about Australian history and the Australian historical experience.

More information on the Research Centre

Recent events

Collecting the Future workshop
2-4 October 2013
Hosted by the American Museum of Natural History and attended by National Museum staff Libby Robin, Kirsten Wehner and George Main.

Book launch - The Future of Nature
22 August 2013
The Future of Nature: Documents of Global Change, edited by Libby Robin, Sverker Sörlin and Paul Warde, was launched at the European Society for Environmental History conference in Munich.

Future of Nature launch with editors Libby Robin, Sverker Sörlin and Paul Warde (centre), flanked by contributors Stephen Bocking and Pey Yi Chu (left) and Arne Kaijser, Tom Griffiths and Christof Mauch (right)
Future of Nature launch with editors Libby Robin, Sverker Sörlin and Paul Warde (centre), flanked by contributors Stephen Bocking and Pey Yi Chu (left) and Arne Kaijser, Tom Griffiths and Christof Mauch (right) Photo: Robert Levy Photography


Jane Carruthers, whose work is honoured by the Edges project, shares her book with artist Mandy Martin (right).Behind: Lise Sedrez, Tom Griffiths and Etienne Benson (contributors)
Jane Carruthers, whose work is honoured by the Edges project, shares her book with artist Mandy Martin (right). Behind contributors Tom Griffiths and Etienne Benson. Photo: Robert Levy Photography

Forthcoming book - The Edges of Environmental History
20 August 2013
Papers from a special one-day workshop to honour the work and influence of South African environmental historian Jane Carruthers, including one from Libby Robin, will be published in an NMA Press book entitled The Edges of Environmental History in July 2014. More information on the workshop from the Centre for Environmental History 

Speakers for the Edges of Environmental History event in Munich are presented with copies of Thomas Baines: Exploring Tropical Australia 1855-1857 (eds. Jane Carruthers and Lindy Stiebel) National Museum of Australia Press 2012
Speakers for the Edges of Environment History event in Munich are presented with copies of Thomas Baines: Exploring Tropical Australia 1855-1857 (eds Jane Carruthers and Lindy Stiebel) National Museum of Australia Press 2012 Photo: Robert Levy Photography


Conferences and seminars

Past programs

'The Compleat Archaeologist': Mike Smith, desert archaeology and museums
Friday 8 February 2013
View videos and comments

View conference papers, audio and speaker information

The Library

The Library of the National Museum of Australia was established in 1984 and has grown into a collection of more than 45,000 books, serials and audiovisual items.

Search the Library catalogue

Go to the Library guide 

Student prize winners announced

Christina Dyson, PhD candidate in the University of Melbourne’s Faculty of Architecture, Building and Planning, has been awarded the 2013 Mike Smith Prize. Alessandro Antonello and Sonya Duus, both from the Australian National University, were jointly awarded the 2013 runner-up prize.

For more details see Prizes and awards


Online publications

reCollections: a journal of museums and collections is an independent, peer-reviewed journal. It focuses on two main areas: museology and museum practice; and the history and interpretation of objects and the social and environmental history of material culture.

Understanding Museums: Australian museums and museology is an online publication tracing the changes that have taken place in Australian museums of all kinds since the 1970s.

Staff presentations and papers

The staff at the Museum regularly give talks and present papers to the public. Staff presentations and papers provides links to articles by staff members published online in: