Research is core to our activities as a Museum, crucial to our stewardship of collections and to the intellectual development of subject knowledge.

Research is fostered through curatorial work, enquiries, projects and grants undertaken with other institutions and universities worldwide. It is communicated to the wider public through temporary and permanent exhibitions, lectures, conferences, as well as workshops, and social media. Research is essential to the dynamic reappraisal of our collections and knowledge about art, society and the world around us. The research we do has national and international relevance. 

Curatorial departments conduct research programmes across the broad range of collections disciplines. Many members of staff hold honorary or adjunct positions in universities leading to doctoral programmes and are involved in university teaching and examining.

The research programme is guided by the Research Strategy Group, a senior management committee. It includes the Director, the Directors of Collections and Public Programmes, Trustee representatives with university experience and all heads of collections departments who drive research. Meeting regularly, it encourages research activity and gives it strategic focus. 

Current research

Find out more about on-going research projects at National Museums Scotland.

Featured projects

Discover more about ongoing research projects here.

Past projects

Explore past research projects at National Museums Scotland.

Current Collaborative Doctoral Partnership research

Meet the PhD students currently carrying out research at National Museums Scotland funded by the Scottish Cultural Heritage Consortium.

Current Doctoral Training Programme research

Find out more about graduate research undertaken through the Edinburgh Earth and Environment (E3) Doctoral Training Programme (DTP).

Collections and research policies

National Museums Scotland aims to develop, manage, conserve and interpret the national collections, to ensure their preservation and benefit to the public.
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