National Museums Scotland


Original name(s)

  • National Museums Scotland (en - English)
Institution Address

Chambers Street
EH1 1JF  Edinburgh
GB - United Kingdom

Type of organisation

Institution Address

Chambers Street
EH1 1JF Edinburgh
GB - United Kingdom

Museum (State; Public)

Director Representative

Dr.Gordon Rintoul


Structure Chart

Governing & Executive bodies

The Board of Trustees is National Museums Scotland’s governing body. The Board is responsible for setting the National Museums Scotland’s strategic direction and for monitoring progress to achieve this. The management team is fully responsible for the day-to-day operation of the National Museums Scotland and for the implementation of strategy. The Board and management team work closely together in their different roles. National Museums Scotland is a public body, and the Board is accountable to Scottish Ministers and the Scottish Parliament. Trustees have a Code of Conduct which is on this website. Biographies of Trustees, Board minutes and Trustees’ registered interests are also posted on this website. Previous years' minutes can be viewed in the Trustees minutes archive. Trustees bring to the National Museums Scotland a wide range of skills, backgrounds and experience in academic life, business, media, technology, education and community involvement. Individually they bring not only this experience, but also many different perspectives on how the National Museums Scotland can best serve the public. Trustees also have a vital role to act as ambassadors for National Museums Scotland, both in gathering support for large projects and, equally importantly, in ensuring the widest possible understanding of National Museums Scotland’s collections and its services (locally, nationally and internationally). National Museums Scotland can have up to 15 Trustees, who are all appointed by the Minister for Culture, Tourism & External Affairs. They are normally appointed for a term of four years, and may serve for a second term. Trustees are appointed through an open process where posts are advertised and candidates are interviewed. The Director has overall responsibility for implementing the agreed strategic priorities and actions of the Board of Trustees of National Museums Scotland. The Director and Executive Team make up the top management tier of National Museums Scotland.

Staff fields

scientific staff associated: 7.0.scientific staff collections permanent: 7.5.scientific staff permanent: 9.0.scientific staff post doc non permanent: 4.0.staff administrative permanent: 1.0.staff collection managers technicians permanent: 7.0.staff exhibitions permanent: 0.5;staff total: 36.0

Membership fields

Associate member

General Description

Scotland’s Palaeozoic rocks represent important windows through which crucial stages in the early evolution of life on Earth can be viewed. Our Palaeozoic collections are renowned worldwide for specimens of eurypterids, plants, fishes and early tetrapods. They are central to our research on early vertebrate diversity and evolution, the reconstruction of evolutionary pattern and process, and uses of fossils and systematic methods in evolutionary developmental biology. Taxonomic expertise in arthropods, brachiopods, and “enigmatic” Palaeozoic fossils sits together with fossil birds, dinosaurs and marine reptiles. There is also a focus on amber deposits including a growing collections of Burmese amber which is a joint programme with Invertebrates. Vertebrate Biology Core research within Vertebrate Biology looks at hybridisation between native and introduced mammal species, geographical variation and the effects of captivity on mammal and bird skeletal morphology, including ageing and pathology. Other research strands focus on molecular evolution and the biogeography and archaeology of Eurasian mammals, especially rodents and cetaceans. Annual Reviews

Research Fields

  • Mollusca (focus on Hydrobiids)
  • Diptera (focus on Syrphidae and Sciaroidea)
  • Coleoptera (focus on Silphids)
  • Hymenoptera (focus on Ichneumonidae and Braconidae)
  • Ephemeroptera
  • Fossil invertebrates (focus on Brachiopoda, Arthropoda – including insects)
  • Copepods (focus on Harpactocoida)
  • Polychaetes (focus on Cirratulidae and Polynoidae)
  • Aves (Living and fossil)
  • Mammals (focus on Carnivora, Cetacea and Rodentia)

Research Initiative

On-line outreach activitie : : []
other outreach activitie : : [['We offer school programmes, guided tours (including of the collections areas)']]
Non academic trainings : : []
Academic trainings : : [['National Museums Scotland is part of the Edinburgh University doctoral training partnesrship']]
General description : : []


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