Art Museum Staff Demographic Survey, United States, 2015, 2018 (ICPSR 38196)

Version Date: May 31, 2022 View help for published

Principal Investigator(s): View help for Principal Investigator(s)
Mariët Westermann, Andrew W. Mellon Foundation; Liam Sweeney, Ithaka S+R; Roger C. Schonfeld, Ithaka S+R

Version V1

These data were gathered on behalf of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, in partnership with the American Alliance of Museums (AAM) and the Association of Art Museum Directors (AAMD). The goal of the survey was to study the representational diversity within art museums through quantitative means. The survey instrument, developed by Ithaka S+R, was administered to directors of AAMD and AAM member art museums. The first cycle of data were collected in 2015 (February-March 2015), and the second cycle in 2018 (July-September 2018). The collected data was sent to researchers at Ithaka S+R, who appended, cleaned and analyzed the data, and presented findings in a public research report.

The 2018 instrument was slightly expanded to capture additional specifics of the composition of art museum employees.

332 art museums responded to the survey in 2018 and 136 of them also participated in the survey in 2015. The survey collected demographic and employment data for over 30,000 museum employees. About 27,000 of these are employed at AAMD museums, and approximately 3,000 are from (non-AAMD) AAM member museums.

Westermann, Mariët, Sweeney, Liam, and Schonfeld, Roger C. Art Museum Staff Demographic Survey, United States, 2015, 2018. Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2022-05-31.

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Andrew W. Mellon Foundation
Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research

2015, 2018
2015-02 -- 2015-03, 2018-07 -- 2018-09

Longitudinal: Trend / Repeated Cross-section

Art museums belonging to the Association of Art Museum Directors (AAMD) or the American Alliance of Museums (AAM)

administrative records data

Variables include job category, race, ethnicity, employment status, and gender.



2022-05-31 ICPSR data undergo a confidentiality review and are altered when necessary to limit the risk of disclosure. ICPSR also routinely creates ready-to-go data files along with setups in the major statistical software formats as well as standard codebooks to accompany the data. In addition to these procedures, ICPSR performed the following processing steps for this data collection:

  • Performed consistency checks.
  • Created variable labels and/or value labels.
  • Standardized missing values.
  • Created online analysis version with question text.
  • Performed recodes and/or calculated derived variables.
  • Checked for undocumented or out-of-range codes.


  • The public-use data files in this collection are available for access by the general public. Access does not require affiliation with an ICPSR member institution.

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