What we do What do we do at the Natural History Museum Basel?

For over 300 years, our museum has researched and looked after various valuable collections from the worlds of geology and biology.

The collections at the Natural History Museum Basel, known as the 'Archive of Life', originate in the Amersbach cabinet from 1661.

Today, we look after over 7.7 million objects. From these important regional and international collections, we glean knowledge and pass it on to the general public. We do this partly through the exhibitions and services we offer for children, young people and schools, as well as through guided tours and events for the general public. A global network also enables us to lead an extensive scientific dialogue, which guarantees research and teaching of a very high standard.

The employees of the Natural History Museum Basel are involved in various scientific research projects of national and international significance. They produce several dozen scientific papers every year. At the same time, scientists from abroad also write numerous publications about objects from our collections.

As a not-for-profit, state-run institution, the Natural History Museum Basel is a department of the canton Basel-Stadt. It is part of the cultural division which belongs to the presidential department. The service agreement with the canton Basel-Stadt describes the museum's core task as follows:

'The Natural History Museum Basel (...) will expand, maintain, research, document and disseminate the public collection that has been in existence since 1849.'

The Museums Act describes the political remit and framework within which state-owned museums operate.

Museums Committee

The museum committee supports, advises and assists the museum's management in fulfilling the museum's cultural and scientific remit. The committee in particular maintains a relationship with the university and the circles that support the Natural History Museum Basel.

Dr. Heiner Vischer (President)
Biologist, Member of the Great Council of the canton Basel-Stadt, LDP

Prof. Dr. phil. Bruno Baur
Extraordinary Professor, Principal of the Institute for Nature, Agricultural and Environmental Conservation (NLU)

Prof. Dr. Oliver Heiri
Head of the research group geoecology
Department of Environmental Sciences, University of Basel

Prof. Dr. Patricia Holm
Extraordinary Professor, Head of the Researach Group Mensch-Gesellschaft-Umwelt (MGU)

Dr. Michelle Lachenmeier
Assistant Professor /
Extraordinary Cort Clark

Prof. Dr. Ansgar Kahmen
University of Basel, Department of Environmental Sciences - Botany

Pascale Meyer MA
Head of Department
Cultural History 2
Swiss National Museum

Suzanne Senti-Eichenberger
Architect ETH/SIA

Prof. Dr. Marcel Tanner
President SCNAT, Director em Swiss TPH