South Australian Museum Research and Collections restructure

30 November 2017

Science centre

The Director of the South Australian Museum, Mr Brian Oldman, has unveiled a new organisational structure for the Museum’s research and collections teams.

From early 2018, staff will be allocated to one of four teams – Earth and Biological Sciences, Humanities, Archives and Library Services and Collection Management.

The restructure does not involve any reduction in staff numbers and will further improve the Museum’s ability to conduct research and care for its collections.

The new structure will make reporting structures explicit, thus improving flow of information between staff members.

The structure will focus on how the Museum’s research and collections can best respond to industry needs, including the tertiary sector, which will mean the Museum is better placed to serve the South Australian community and contribute to globally significant science and humanities research. Through successful fundraising, the Museum has created the new additional positions of the W&M Geary Curator Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Art & Material Culture Collection alongside early career research fellowships and cadetships.

These changes will also see the Museum better able to care for its considerable collections, with collections managers existing in one team for the first time. This new team will enable collection managers to support and learn from each other. It also offers a promotional opportunity for the Museum’s existing collection managers, with two new Senior Collection Manager roles being introduced.

Consultation with affected South Australian Museum staff is still under way. It is anticipated that all roles will be filled and new reporting lines in place by the end of January 2018.

Director Brian Oldman said: “The South Australian Museum is Australia’s premier research museum. These changes are designed to ensure that this position continues into the future.

“It is about increasing our efficiencies and ensuring that we retain our standing as a globally significant research institution. It also ensures that our collections continue to receive the highest possible standard of care.

“For example, the South Australian Museum has the most important Australian Aboriginal cultural materials collection in the world, and this collection and associated research will benefit strongly from the new structure.

“The structure allows us to create new career opportunities and pathways for Aboriginal scholars, collections and curators, which will reaffirm our commitment to Aboriginal knowledge, values and concepts in the care and interpretation of our collections,” said Mr Oldman.