The 2007-08 Survey of Museums defined a museum as an establishment which is involved in acquiring, conserving, researching into, communicating and exhibiting material evidence of people, their culture and environment for the purposes of study, education and enjoyment by the general public. The scope of the 2007-08 survey was employing and non-employing businesses and organisations that were mainly engaged in the operation of museums and art galleries. The scope also included other museums/galleries registered as having a collection with Collections Australia Network. The scope excluded organisations mainly engaged in the operation of botanic gardens, herbariums, zoological gardens, aquariums, observatories and planetariums, public libraries and science centres.
The reader should bear in mind that this survey was not designed to support accurate estimates of change over time and should exercise caution when comparing 2007-08 and 2003-04 for several reasons, including changes to coverage and industry classification. For more information, see the technical note of (ABS, 2009d) Museums, Australia, 2007-08 (cat. no. 8560.0).
In June 2008, there were 1,184 museum establishments operating in Australia. Of these, 14% were art galleries and the remaining 86% were classified as other museums. The other museums category included social history museums, historic properties or sites and natural, science and other museums.
8.4 Number of museum establishments - end June 2008
Share of museum/gallery organisations
|Art museum/gallery |
|Other museums |
|Social history museum |
|Historic properties/sites |
|Natural, science and other |
|Total other museums(a) |
|^ estimate has a relative standard error of 10% to less than 25% and should be used with caution |
|* estimate has a relative standard error of 25% to 50% and should be used with caution |
|(a) Where figures have been rounded, discrepancies may occur between the sum of component items and the total. |
|Source: Museums, Australia, 2007-08 (cat. no. 8560.0). |