Research on objects
The National Museum of Antiquities has in its care a sizeable collection of archaeological objects. The Museum itself conducts research on its collection, but it also facilitates a great many requests submitted by external researchers. To ensure that the growing number of research projects on objects are conducted with all due safety and care, we attach a number of conditions. These are designed to ensure that decisions are weighed carefully, with the aim of protecting the collection’s future and securing its integrity.
Applications for internal research
If you wish to perform research at the National Museum of Antiquities on the Museum’s collection, please contact the curator of the relevant sectiondepartment. You must substantiate why your research is important and explain how you wish to use the National Museum of Antiquities’ collection for that purpose. If possible, you must submit a specified list of objects stating the inventory numbers and discuss with the curator the methods you wish to use and the date(s) and time(s) you wish to conduct your research. The Museum shall strive to facilitate your research but its options are limited. If you wish to perform long-term research on the collection, you can also submit an application to take out an object on loan.
Applications for external research (on loan)
Submitting the application
Using the application form that can be downloaded from the bottom of this page, please submit a concise research application to Collection Manager Nikè Haverkamp (). This application should explain why you believe the proposed research to be important and how you intend to use the collection of the Dutch National Museum of Antiquities for the research project. If possible it will also include a specified list of objects with inventory numbers and details regarding the intended research methods and the names of the researchers who will be handling the material. In addition, you should specify the duration of the research period. Finally, we wish to know how the objects that you are requesting on loan are to be stored: what are the arrangements for the room or cupboard and what are the climate conditions? If you wish to perform invasive research, you must submit an additional application (see further down this page). The National Museum of Antiquities is cautious with issuing permission for invasive research methods.
Planning the application
Your application needs to be submitted no later than six months before the commencement of the date of the research for which the objects are being requested. A decision will then be made on the basis of the application and the condition of the objects concerned. Within four months of receiving the application the museum will notify you of its decision. Destructive testing is in principle inadmissible and can only be allowed in highly exceptional circumstances. If your application is approved, you will be notified of the supplementary conditions and given an estimate of the costs involved, e.g. of insurance, transport, conservation, handling, and courier charges.
Objects supplied on loan are insured by the National Museum of Antiquities. In the case of objects with a relatively high insurance value, or large groups of archaeological finds, the costs of the insurance policy may be passed on to the research institute.
In the event of any damage to an object during the research, you must immediately inform the National Museum of Antiquities. In this event you should seal off the location or place the damaged object in a secure place such that it is certain that no further damage will be incurred. You should then await further instructions from the Museum. If restoration is necessary, the costs may or will be claimed back from the loan recipient.
When the research period comes to an end, you are responsible for ensuring that the objects are returned to the Museum in accordance with the agreement. Within a year of the research, the National Museum of Antiquities should be sent a report of the research and its results. In the case of data that have not yet been published, the National Museum of Antiquities promises that these will only be archived. In addition, the loan recipient is required to send the Museum a copy of the publication resulting from the research (book, article etc.) for its archives or library.
- Download the ‘External research’ application form at the bottom of this page
Submission of the application
The National Museum of Antiquities is cautious with issuing permission for invasive research on objects in the National Collection. However, invasive research may increase the historic, scientific and/or social value of the object in question, thereby also increasing its museal significance. In that event, the Museum may decide to permit invasive research in order to increase the value of its collection. Research that involves damage to any object in the National Collection which results in the destruction of the object is not permitted.
Applications for invasive research can be sent to the head of collections and research, Lucas Petit (). You will find an application form at the bottom of this page. You must explain your research question and methods and substantiate why the research must be performed now and how and when it will be reported on.
Prior to the performance of the research, the object must be photographically recorded in its entirety. The location of the sample collection and the collected sample must also be documented in detail. The researcher must limit the damage to the greatest possible extent. After collection of the sample, the object must again be photographed.
You must send a research report and the relevant results to the National Museum of Antiquities within a year following the research. The Museum guarantees that any as yet unpublished information shall only be archived. You must also send the final publication (book, article, etc.) to the Museum for inclusion in its archives or the library.
- Download the ‘Invasive research’ application form at the bottom of this page