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The National Museum of Australia guides the delivery of its outputs through its corporate governance framework. This comprises the Museum's enabling legislation and other legislative instruments, managerial and organisational structures, corporate policies and strategies, and resource management practices.


The key legislative instrument defining the broad functions and activities of the Museum is the National Museum of Australia Act 1980. This Act established the Museum as a Commonwealth statutory authority and, along with the National Museum of Australia Regulations, defines its role, functions and powers. The functions and powers of the Museum are in Appendix 2. The Commonwealth Authorities and Companies Act 1997 provides a single set of core reporting, auditing and accountability requirements for directors of Commonwealth authorities. It deals with other matters such as banking and investment and the conduct of officers. It also states that directors are responsible for the preparation and content of the report of operations in accordance with the Commonwealth Authorities and Companies (Report of Operations) Orders 2005. The Public Service Act 1999 covers the powers of the Director of the National Museum of Australia in relation to the management of human resources.

The National Museum of Australia is a statutory authority within the portfolio of Communications, Information Technology and the Arts.

Governance model

Flow chart indicating the responsibility of the Executive team by way of accountability, performance, strategy and controls.

Council and committees

The Council of the National Museum of Australia is responsible for the overall performance of the organisation, including setting the strategic direction and establishing goals for management. The Council works with senior management in developing, executing, monitoring and adjusting the appropriate strategies.

The National Museum of Australia Act 1980 provides for a Council consisting of a chairman, the Director of the Museum and not less than seven or more than 10 members. All members are appointed by the Governor-General and, apart from the Director, are part-time and appointed for terms of up to three years, although terms of appointment can be extended. The Director is appointed for a period not exceeding seven years.

The current membership of the Council provides a mix of skills and experience in the areas of history, politics, education, business, farming, financial and strategic management, journalism, museum management, and government policy and administration. The Commonwealth Remuneration Tribunal determines remuneration for non-executive members.

During 2006–07 the terms of two non-executive members lapsed.

At 30 June 2007, the Council comprised the following members:

  • The Hon Tony Staley AO (Chairman)
  • Dr John Hirst (Deputy Chairman)
  • Mr David Barnett OBE
  • Mr Benjamin Chow AO
  • Dr John Fleming
  • Ms Sally Anne Hasluck
  • Mr Christopher Pearson
  • Mr Craddock Morton (executive member).
Group photograph of ten members of the Council of the National Museum of Australia. John Hirst, Tony Staley and Craddock Morton are seated at a table and the other seven members are standing behind them.
The Council of the National Museum of Australia (back from left) Benjamin Chow, David Barnett, Marian Gibney (term ended 23 June 2007, reappointed 22 August 2007), Christopher Pearson, Sally Anne Hasluck, Tim Duncan (term ended 19 November 2006), John Fleming and (front) John Hirst, Tony Staley
and Craddock Morton.

The Council held four meetings during 2006–07. A senior officer from the Department of Communications, Information Technology and the Arts attends Council meetings as an observer.

The Museum provides Council members with information on government changes to corporate governance responsibilities as it becomes available, including Australian National Audit Office documents and guidelines.

The Council has policy and procedures for the disclosure and resolution of any matter for its consideration that may result in a conflict of interest. Members are required to make the nature of that interest known at the commencement of a Council meeting and details of such disclosures are recorded in the minutes of the meeting.

The Council has three committees established to assist in the execution of its responsibilities. These are:

  • Audit and Finance Committee
  • Collections Committee
  • Sponsorship and Development Committee.

Details of Council committees are in Appendix 1.

National Museum of Australia organisation chart as at 30 June 2007

Craddock Morton

Audience and Programs Division General Manager
Louise Douglas

Collections and Content Division General Manager
Mathew Trinca

Operations Division General Manager


David Arnold

Carol Cooper

Facilities and Risk Management
John Ryan

Executive Officer
Trevor Fowler

Audience Development/ Evaluation and Visitor Research
Rachael Coghlan and Susan Tonkin

Eric Archer

Employee Relations and People Development Lisa Wilmot

Finance and Retail
Jeff Smart

Marketing and Sponsorship
Trish Kirkland

Collections Development
Guy Hansen (A/g)

Information Technology and Services
Chris Gill

Strategic Development and Policy
Roger Garland

Print and Digital Media
Karen Leary

Gallery Development
Kirsten Wehner (A/g)


Public Affairs
Dennis Grant

Public Programs and Events
Gabrielle Hyslop

Australian Society and Culture
Sophie Jensen

Museum Enhancement Program
Steven Fox

Indigenous Matters Principal Advisor
Margo Neale

Visitor Services and Volunteers Manager
Meredith Sack

People and Environment
Matthew Higgins

Media Operations
Brian Ellwood

Legal Services
Fiona Dalton

Friends Executive Officer
Judy Kean

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Program Michael Pickering

Venue and Bookings Coordinator
Melinda Kibukamusoke

Centre for Historical Research
Peter Stanley

Collection Information and Digitisation/OPAL
Helen Ludellen

Workplace Design and Storage Project
Greer Gehrt

Accountability chain as at 30 June 2007

Flow chart of the accountability chain as at 30 June 2007.

Executive Management group

The Executive Management group, comprising the Director and three General Managers, provides strategic and operational leadership to the Museum.
Individual images (clockwise from top left) of Craddock Morton, Suzy Nethercott-Watson, Louise Douglas and Mathew Trinca.
(clockwise from top left) National Museum Director Craddock Morton; General Managers Suzy Nethercott-Watson, Louise Douglas and Mathew Trinca.

Performance Management Framework

The Museum's organisational Performance Management Framework continues to provide the structure for delivering outputs and outcomes through planning, policy and procedural work. Performance is guided by the Museum's Strategic Plan and its vision and mission statements and is tracked through a set of quantitative measures and project management practices.

Strategic Plan

This has been the third and final year of implementation of the Museum's Strategic Plan 2004–07. The key priorities and a summary of progress against the Strategic Plan's business priorities for 2006–07 are provided in Part 1, Executive summary.

Business planning

Business planning and performance reporting are central to the Museum's delivery of outcomes and outputs for its stakeholders. Museum divisions and their business units implement annual business plans linked to the Museum's strategic priorities. Business planning identifies key risks for the delivery of the Museum's priorities and includes risk mitigation.

Performance Management Framework overview

Flow chart of the Museum's Performance Management Framework.

Project management

During the year the Museum's project management methodology was further deployed. In support of the methodology, the rollout of the project management software system was completed. Application of the methodology, software and project support will continue to evolve throughout 2007–08.

Policies and plans

The Museum has a comprehensive suite of policies and plans. Policies are monitored and reviewed at regular intervals and are publicly available on the Museum's website. During the year, Council approved the Permanent Exhibitions Policy and the Privacy Policy.

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