The 2003-04 ABS Survey of Museums found that the total income in the 2003-04 financial year for the 1,329 museums establishments in Australia was $919.4m. About two-thirds (68%) of this income was provided by government, with the bulk of the balance made up by fundraising ($89m), admissions ($56m) and sales of goods ($50m).
Labour costs accounted for $320.4m of museum expenses in 2003-04, which was two fifths (40%) of total outgoings. Wages and salaries ($277.1m) made up 86% of labour costs. During the year, museums also spent $32.3m on exhibition and display development costs.
8.5 Museum establishments, Income and expenses - 2003-04
Social history museums
and other museums
|Government funding |
|Admissions income |
|Fund raising |
|Other income |
|Wages and salaries |
|Other expenses |
|ABS, Museums, Australia, 2003-04 (cat. no. 8560.0). |
A more recent data collection which focuses solely on government funding for cultural activities, found that the Australian Government provided $46.3m to art galleries and a further $182.1m to other museums in 2003-04. State and territory governments contributed a total of $472.4m to art galleries and other museums.
While local governments also provide considerable cultural funding, there was no recent data available on the specific amounts committed to museums.
It should be noted that the government funding collection adopted a broader definition of art galleries and other museums, therefore its data are not directly comparable to those obtained from the Survey of Museums.
8.6 Cultural funding by government, Museums - 2003-04
State and Territory Governments
|Art galleries |
|Other museums |
|ABS, Cultural Funding by Government, Australia, 2003-04 (cat. no. 4183.0). |