Strategic Plan for Natural History Museum (Nhm)

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A voice of authority on the natural world

Strategic Plan
2011–16
The Natural History Museum is a scientific centre of global significance and one of the world’s leading visitor attractions for engagement with the natural world. The institution occupies two museum sites in South Kensington, London, and Tring in Hertfordshire plus storage facilities in Wandsworth, south London.

Our vision is what we aspire to
To advance our knowledge of the natural world, inspiring better care of our planet

Our positioning is the way we intend to be seen
A voice of authority on the natural world

Our mission is a description of why we are here and what we do To maintain and develop our collections, and use them to promote the discovery, understanding, responsible use and enjoyment of the natural world

‘The Natural History Museum has an exciting future, but also a challenging one. We know that excellence will not be enough – we must be seen to deliver value. More than ever, we will need the continuing support of government, grant-awarding bodies and our many loyal patrons and supporters. As a body of people working together we will need to recognise and capitalise on new opportunities to generate income and build long and loyal relationships. I want everyone here to be involved in making that future happen.’

Dr Michael Dixon, Director
Executive Summary

The world’s leading natural history museum

The Museum has just completed one of the most successful periods in its history. However, in response to the difficult economic climate, we have brought forward our five-year Strategic Plan by one year to refocus our objectives in the context of changes in political priorities and constraints on public funding.

This Strategic Plan sets out the objectives of the Museum to 2016, which are grouped under three cross-cutting strategic themes that achieve our vision:

• developing knowledge of the natural world, our strategy for supporting innovation and ideas

• inspiring a sustained engagement with the natural world, our strategy for engaging with our stakeholders

• managing resources; investing in infrastructure, our strategy for the best use of our assets for the long-term future of the Museum

We must deliver all these objectives to be successful. In most cases, delivery of the objectives depends on internal collaboration of teams across operational lines and external collaboration with trusted partners. The diagram below illustrates how teams from across the Museum can all be involved to varying levels with one project or activity. It also recognises that Corporate Services is a constant, the backbone on which we all rely.

Our vision is that, by 2016, we will be widely acknowledged as the world’s leading natural history museum, valued by all our stakeholders as a major scientific research institution and a centre for innovative public engagement with science and the natural world through our collections and expertise.

We will measure our success by the quality, impact and relevance of our research, our reputation in leading international collaborations for research, collections management and knowledge transfer, innovation and impact of our public engagement activities, and the perception of us by our key stakeholders.

The Museum will continue to be a frontline service that contributes to the Government’s priorities and to society as a whole. Government will appreciate and acknowledge the breadth, depth and relevance of the work we do and understand the public value derived from this.

Looking forward, we will need to instigate change within our organisation to support and encourage creativity and innovation, to become more agile and responsive to opportunities, to do more of our work in partnership with others and to deliver greater impact and better value for money. We have a committed team that will continue to drive our success and achieve our vision.

The world’s leading natural history...
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