The Annual Museum Survey 2023 is now closed.

The purpose of the Annual Museum Survey 2023

The purpose of the Annual Museum Survey is to gather evidence to help demonstrate the social and economic importance of museums to funders and stakeholders – locally, regionally and nationally – and to provide museums with data to enable them to benchmark their performance.

What’s in it for museums?

  • Advocacy – evidence to make the case for your social and economic value in order to sustain investment
  • Performance benchmarking – consistent data to compare your museum’s operational context
  • Informing strategy – knowing your operational context will support your business planning
  • Fundraising – the data can be used as evidence to support funding applications or to express your value with the public

Read the interactive reports for Annual Museum Survey 2022 for England and the nine English regions here.

The process

The Annual Museum Survey 2023 is open now. Registered museums are have been invited to participate in the survey by email. The email includes a direct link to an online survey tool called SmartSurvey.

We have provided the survey questions offline below to assist you in preparing your return. Please note, the offline surveys will differ depending on whether you are a single site or a multi site organisation. The definitions will help to provide added clarity on the terminology used within the survey questions. Please note, the online survey uses logic to apply only relevant questions. Therefore, some of the offline survey questions listed below may not apply and will result in fewer questions and a shorter survey process.

If you require any further support, please contact us on [email protected].

Data and privacy statements

South West Museum Development (Bristol City Council) is commissioned by each Museum Development region to deliver the Annual Museum Survey 2023.

As the contractor for the Annual Museum Survey 2023, we operate as the Data Processor for each of the regional Museum Development providers.  Survey responses are stored and processed in compliance with the General Data Protection Regulations (2018).

No personal information will be published in publicly available reports or datasets or shared with other organisations. As the Data Processor, on behalf of the eight Museum Development providers, we supply the data generated through the survey along with the contact details of the individual providing the data survey return to each respective Museum Development provider. Links to your Museum Development regional privacy policies are provided below:

London Museum Development

Share Museums East

South East Museum Development

South West Museum Development (Data controller and processor for the South West)

East Midlands

West Midlands

Museum Development North East

Museum Development North West

Museum Development Yorkshire

Data sharing and open source data

Reports based on this survey will be published widely and made available on this webpage and the websites of regional Museum Development providers. Data provided via the survey will be combined with those of other museums to produce publicly available reports. The data will support sector advocacy, inform Museum Development business planning and sector wide strategic planning.

The dataset will be published as open source data on Museum Development websites from January 2025 – approximately one year after regional reports are published to support further research. The datasets will not include financial information or any personal information generated by the survey process. The aggregate data set generated by the survey in 2024 will be shared with our main funders, Arts Council England.