Facility rental business plan for the Florida Museum of Natural History

Material Information

Facility rental business plan for the Florida Museum of Natural History
Campbell, Leslie L.
Place of Publication:
Gainesville, Fla.
University of Florida
Publication Date:


Subjects / Keywords:
Art education ( jstor )
Art museums ( jstor )
Budget allocation ( jstor )
Business models ( jstor )
Corporations ( jstor )
Funding ( jstor )
Gift shops ( jstor )
Graduate schools ( jstor )
Museums ( jstor )
Total revenue ( jstor )
University of Florida. ( LCSH )
Florida Museum of Natural History ( local )
Spatial Coverage:
North America -- United States of America -- Florida


General Note:
Museum Studies terminal project
General Note:
Project in lieu of thesis

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of Florida
Holding Location:
University of Florida
Rights Management:
All rights reserved, Board of Trustees of the University of Florida
Resource Identifier:
427886725 ( OCLC )


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Summary of Project Option in Lieu of Thesis
Presented to the Graduate School of the University of Florida
In Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the
Degree of Master of Arts



Leslie L. Campbell

December 2007

Chair: Victoria Rovine
Major: Museology

My project is a comprehensive business plan for the Florida Museum of Natural

History to provide rental opportunities for various spaces within the Museum. It will take

into consideration the mission, as well as the economic needs of the Museum. Some of

the sections will include staffing, management, expected income, resource management,

pricing, and cost recovery for rental items (such as tables and chairs), evaluation of

storage needs, and marketing (including website design). My project will assess the

relationship between the institution's mission and its financial survival aspect and review

the business plan process.

Since the 1990s, museums have seen a decrease in government funding leading to

a time of financial uncertainty. Business enterprises are increasingly becoming a more

important source of revenue for museums. These can include gift shops, cafes and

restaurants, and facility rentals. A successful example of a business enterprise would be

The Met Store. The Metropolitan Museum of Art opened a gift shop at the museum, and

also opened stores across the world and on the internet. At present, The Met Store

provides a significant portion of earned income for the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

However, the innovativeness of this venture caused many in the nonprofit sector to

question the ethics behind a profit-based business related to a prestigious art museum.

Other museums, such as the Field Museum in Chicago, have created elaborate facility

rental options, which are made available to the general public, to increase earned income

for their organizations.

The ICOM Code for Professional Ethics states that, "Museum shops and any

other commercial activities should be relevant to the collections and the basic

educational purpose of the museum, and must not compromise the quality of those

collections." So this begs the question, how do museums supplement their revenue while

maintaining the principles of their missions? The Florida Museum of Natural History

finds itself dealing with this issue each fiscal year. The Museum's total revenue in

2005-2006 was $18.1 million. Of that, the State allocation was only 45% of the total

revenue. In comparison, the State allocation was 71% of the total revenue in 1999-2000.

Although it appears that funding has been cut from the budget it has actually remained

constant, year after year. All other sources of income to run the Museum have increased

disproportionately to the State allocation. Funds from the State of Florida are failing to

keep pace with inflation. Museums, like the Florida Museum of Natural History, must

learn to be resourceful if they want to keep their doors open to the public.

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