The museum in figures

The Natural History Museum Basel is part of the presidential department. Below are its key financial, research and visitor numbers for 2021.


89.43% of our income comes from contributions by the canton of Basel-Stadt. Besides that, we finance the museum's operation through admission fees, sales in the museum shop, revenue from services and through third-party funds from sponsors, benefactors and foundations.


57.1% of our expenses relate to staff costs. 26.9% are needed to cover the cost of renting the museum's premises. Around a fifth of our expenditure is used on running the museum, maintaining the collections, carrying out research and for exhibitions.

Income in detail

Admissions 440'530.– 4,23%
Museum shop 161'237.– 1,55%
Other revenue 70'207.– 4,37%
Third-party funding 381'469.– 3,67%
Public contributions 9'294'328.– 89,42%
Total 10'393'195.– 100%

Expenses in detail

Material costs 1'669'779.– 16,1%
Property rental 2'792'688.– 26,8%
Staffing costs 5'930'728.– 57,1%
Total 10'393'195.– 100%

Visitors and users

Permanent Exhibitions 50'051 55,1%
Temporary EARTH AT ITS LIMITS 38'299 42,2%
Night at the museum (cancelled due to COVID 19) -- --
Third party events 2'412 2,7%
Total number of visitors and users 90'762 100%

School groups

Canton Basel-Stadt 776 57,1%
Canton Basel-Land 334 24,6%
Rest of Switzerland 215 15,8%
Abroad 34 2,5%
Total 1'359 100%

Figures for collections and research

Number of loans of objects   4'366
Number of days on which guest scientists visited   144
Number of new collection objects   13'704
Scientific publications by the museum's own employees   81
Scientific publications by external scientists about parts of the collection   95


COVID 19 protective measures

In order to contain the spread of the new type of coronavirus, event restrictions and bans as well as the temporary closure of cultural institutions were repeatedly imposed in the year under review. In total, the museum had to remain closed on 59 additional days, 192 events were canceled or postponed.