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Review of the Museum and Art Gallery services : a report to the Department of Community Development, Sport & Cultural Affairs



Review of the Museum and Art Gallery services : a report to the Department of Community Development, Sport & Cultural Affairs

Other title

MAGNT Review December 2004 Morgan; Internal review of MAGNT. Final report March 2004


Morgan, Gary


E-Publications; E-Books; PublicationNT




"This Review has looked at the Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory’s outputs relative to benchmark museum and art gallery activities and outputs around Australia and relative to international trends in museum practice. This Review has also considered possible service outcomes set against three funding scenarios." - Executive summary


This review was commissioned by Risk Management Services of the Department of the Chief Minister for the Northern Territory, on behalf of the Department of Community Development, Sport and Cultural Affairs. The review was put to Tender in October 2004, with the Tender awarded in November 2004. - Introduction; Made available via the Publications (Legal Deposit) Act 2004 (NT).

Table of contents

Executive summary -- Part A: Introduction - Background -- Outputs of this review. Part B: Outputs of the Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory - A comparison of the MAGNT outputs in activities of collection development and management, public programs and research relative to those of other state museums and galleries - A discussion of the MAGNT outputs relative to national and international trends in museums and galleries - A consideration of the scientific focus of the MAGNT in terms of a) its management and outcomes relative to other museums and b) its contribution to Northern Territory economic activity and Government programs - A comparison of per square metre exhibition costs at the MAGNT relative to other institutions - A comparison of the acquisition budget of the MAGNT relative to other institutions. Part C: Possible budget scenarios - A discussion of three budget scenarios for the MAGNT with their consequent service outcomes. Part D: Summary of recommendations. Part E: Sources and acknowledgements. Part F: Appendices 1-8




Museums -- Northern Territory -- Public opinion; Museums -- Evaluation; Public relations -- Museums -- Northern Territory

Publisher name

Northern Territory Government

Place of publication



xviii, 124 pages ; 30 cm.

File type



Attribution International 4.0 (CC BY 4.0)

Copyright owner

Northern Territory Government



Parent handle


Citation address


Related items

https://hdl.handle.net/10070/458000; https://hdl.handle.net/10070/457995

Page content

MAGNT Review December 2004 Morgan 68 IT) were still available to it. There were some later changes under the Planning for Growth initiative of Government in 1998 that required some savings to be made across government. The net effect of the above is that any direct comparison of 1992/93 and current budgets for the MAGNT will fail to reflect the changes in budget management and cost centres in that time. This should not be interpreted as meaning that resources have not decreased to the MAGNT in real terms. There is a general recognition that increases in costs including fixed costs have not been met with a commensurate increase in resources and that discretionary funds have declined as a result (Mitchell Report July 2004). As well, the amalgamation and centralisation of resources (such as corporate services) may result in improved, stable or diminished servicing. (The view amongst some staff of the MAGNT is that there are greater administrative expectations on them since the amalgamation. This may well be correct, and it could reflect fewer resources being available to the MAGNT or it could reflect a more contemporary expectation of managers in the public service.) In a very practical demonstration of budget pressures, the MAGNT has shown a budget shortfall in 2003/04 and 2004/05. The deficit in each of those two years has been in the order of $600,000. One of the objectives of the Stanton Partners Review was to consider options for managing a funding deficit if the funding base was inadequate but not likely to be increased. It is not evident that this was considered in that Report although a range of actions that may result in cost savings or additional revenue are discussed. Senior Management of the MAGNT has made executive decisions regarding program reductions to deal with the c $600,000 shortfall in the past two financial years. In both years, it has been possible for the Department to allocate additional funds to alleviate the need for those decisions to be implemented. The parameters used by MAGNT Senior Management in considering program reductions to address the funding shortfall were: 1. Public safety 2. Occupational health and safety 3. Custodial and legislative responsibilities for the collection; and 4. Staff morale. The first three of these agree well with the parameters set for this Review (see above). This Review recognises staff morale as an important issue but one for management rather than budget decisions per se. Given that it is not possible to interpret the quantum of budget decline reported in the Stanton Partners Report, the $600,000 annual shortfall is probably the best indicator of budget decline below the level of current operations. Given too that MAGNT Senior Management has used parameters for decision making that correlate closely with those used in this Review, there is no reason why the Consultant would fundamentally disagree with the program reductions suggested by the MAGNT. In short, this Review does not assume any quantified figure for relative budgets or budget reductions over the past ten years. It does assume that budgets are being hard