The new Freedom of Information Act 2014 came into effect on 14th October 2014. The Freedom of Information Acts assert the right of members of the public to obtain access to official information to the greatest extent possible consistent with the public interest and the right to privacy of individuals
The Freedom of Information Acts assert the right of members of the public to obtain access to official information to the greatest extent possible, consistent with the public interest and the right to privacy of individuals.
The Act established three new statutory rights:
- A legal right for each person to access information held by public bodies;
- A legal right for each person to have official information relating to himself or herself amended when it is incomplete, incorrect or misleading; and
- A legal right to obtain reasons for decisions affecting oneself.
Section 8 of the Freedom of Information Act 2014 requires FOI bodies to prepare and publish as much information as possible in an open and accessible manner on a routine basis outside of FOI, having regard to the principles of openness, transparency and accountability.
The FOI Publication Scheme commits FOI bodies to make information available as part of their normal business activities in accordance with this scheme.
Please find the National Museum of Ireland’s FOI Publication Scheme below:
1. Information about the National Museum of Ireland
Foundation and Establishment:
The National Museum of Ireland was founded under the Science and Art Museum Act in 1877 and became an independent statutory body with an autonomous Board under the National Cultural Institutions Act 1997 in May 2005. The Board is comprised of a Chairperson and fifteen ordinary members. Board members are appointed by the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, two of whom are nominated by the Royal Irish Academy, two by the Royal Dublin Society and one by the staff of the Museum. The Statutory Board at the National Museum has statutory powers and functions of governance as defined in the National Cultural Institutions Act 1997. These powers are so defined that matters of policy and governance are determined by the statutory independent Board which provide for and ensure the delivery of the best and most effective form of governance and leadership for these institutions.
The Museum is funded through an annual grant received from the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (DAHG) but also generates additional funding through corporate activities – catering, retail services, rental of museum spaces and through charging for some services.
Roles and Responsibilities:
As a national cultural institution, the National Museum of Ireland has a unique responsibility for the natural history of Ireland and for the rich material culture of its peoples. It plays a central role as a source of education and knowledge of Ireland’s culture and natural history and of its relationship to the wider world, making its collections available to audiences at home and abroad.
The Museum is the custodian of much of Ireland’s heritage. Its collections are part of the story of humanity’s search to understand the world we live in. They encompass a broad range of disciplines, including archaeology, decorative and applied arts, history, ethnography, folklife and natural history. Together, these are the most extensive, valuable and complex multidisciplinary collections in the State.
Its vision is to be an outward-looking, people-focused and creative National Museum.
Its mission is to collect, care for, manage and interpret the collections we hold in trust and make them accessible to everyone for inspiration, learning and enjoyment.
Locations and Contact details:
The National Museum of Ireland has four public locations:
- Archaeology, Kildare Street, Dublin
- Decorative Arts & History, Collins Barracks, Dublin
- Country Life, Turlough Park, Co. Mayo
- Natural History, Merrion Square, Dublin
The main telephone number is +353 1 6777444
The four museum sites are open Tuesday to Saturday, 10am-5pm and Sunday to Monday 1pm-5pm.
The Museum is closed on Christmas Day & Good Friday.
Admission is free.
2. Services provided or to be provided to the public
Under the Freedom of Information Acts, everyone is entitled to apply for access to information not otherwise publicly available. You have a right to request access to records held by this National Museum of Ireland; correct personal information held by the National Museum of Ireland concerning yourself wherever it is inaccurate, incomplete or misleading and access to reasons for decisions made by the National Museum of Ireland directly affecting you.
The following categories of records come within the scope of the Acts:
- All records relating to personal information held by the National Museum of Ireland irrespective of when created;
- All other records created after 21st April 1998, which is the commencement date of the Freedom of Information Act; and
- All other records necessary for the understanding of a current record.
Applying for access to records:
If you wish to seek access to information within the National Museum of Ireland using the Freedom of Information Acts you will need to:
- Make your request in writing to Freedom of Information Unit, National Museum of Ireland, Block 19, Collins Barracks, Benburb Street, Dublin 7, or via email to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Indicate that the information is being sought under the Freedom of Information Acts.
- Be as clear and specific as possible in making your request and provide as much information as possible to enable the National Museum of Ireland to identify the records that you require.
- If you would like to receive access to the information/records requested in a particular format, (e.g. photocopies, electronically etc), please mention this when submitting your request.
- Include a daytime telephone number or email address and your postal address to help us to contact you if any queries arise in relation to your request.
- Requests should be posted or emailed to the FOI Unit of this National Museum of Ireland (contact details at bottom of page).
If you are having difficulty in identifying the precise records that you require, the staff of the National Museum of Ireland will be happy to help you.
The National Museum of Ireland will acknowledge receipt of your request in writing within 10 working days. The acknowledgement letter will also provide you with the name and contact details of the person who will be making the decision in relation to your request and will advise you when you can expect to receive this decision.
Fees for accessing services:
Fees may be charged for search, retrieval and copying of the records requested. This process involves two stages:
- Locating the broad set of records in which those requested might be found.
- Identifying, extracting and assembling the particular records sought for examination.
Fees for the estimated cost of searching for and retrieving records and copying the records can only be charged with respect to records being released. €20 is charged for each hour spent searching for and retrieving records and €0.04 is charged per sheet for a photocopy of the records released.
Bands for estimating search & retrieval (€20 per hour) and photocopying fees (€0.04 per sheet) :
Less than 5
€100 or less
No fees can be charged for search & retrieval or copying
Between 5 and 25
€101 - €500
Search & retrieval and copying fees apply
Between 25 and 35
€501 - €700
No more than €500 can be charged for search & retrieval or copying
More than 35
More than €700
The decision maker will contact the requester to ask him/her to refine/amend the request to ensure that the search & retrieval & coping charges are below €700. If the requester refuses to refine/amend the request then the request can be refused under Section 27 (12)(iii)
In cases where search and retrieval fees apply, we are obliged to charge a deposit of at least 20% of the estimate to the requester.
What to do if you are unhappy with the National Museum of Ireland's decision?:
The Freedom of Information Acts set out a series of exemptions to protect sensitive information where its disclosure may damage key interests of the State or of third parties. Where the National Museum of Ireland invokes these provisions to withhold records, the requester will be advised. Virtually all decisions to refuse release of records may be appealed. Other decisions in relation to deferral of access to records, fees charged, forms of access etc., may also be appealed.
1. Internal Review
You may seek an internal review of the National Museum of Ireland's initial decision in relation to your request if:
- You are dissatisfied with the initial response received;
- You have not received a reply within 4 weeks of your initial application. This is deemed to be a refusal of your request and allows you to proceed to request an internal review.
The internal review will be carried out by an official at a higher grade than the original decision maker and who was not involved in the original decision making process. The National Museum of Ireland must complete its internal review of the original decision within 15 working days of receipt of the request for an internal review.
To submit your internal review request, you need to write to the FOI Unit by email to email@example.com or by post to the FOI Unit, National Museum of Ireland , Block 19 Collins Barracks, Benburb Street, Dublin 7, referring to your FOI request. You must make your appeal within 20 working days of the date that the decision letter was issued to you (the making of a late appeal may be permitted in appropriate circumstances). An application fee of €30 (€10 if you are covered by a medical card) is required before the processing of an internal review can begin. This fee can be paid by electronic funds transfer (EFT) and our bank account details will be listed in all decision letters.
An internal review may affirm, vary or annul the original decision in relation to a request. The internal review process must be completed before an appeal can be submitted to the Information Commissioner
2. Review by the Information Commissioner
If you are still dissatisfied following completion of the internal review, you may also seek an independent review of the National Museum of Ireland's decision from the Information Commissioner. Furthermore, if you have not received a reply from the National Museum of Ireland to your application for internal review within 3 weeks, this is deemed to be a refusal and you may appeal the matter to the Commissioner.Appeals should be made directly to the Information Commissioner (details provided below). The fee for appeals to the Information Commissioner is €50 (€15 for medical card holders and their dependants).
Office of the Information Commissioner
18 Lower Leeson Street, Dublin 2
Lo-Call: 1890 223 030
Tel:01 639 5689
Fax: 01 639 5674
3. Financial Information
The National Museum of Ireland is a ‘contracting authority’, defined under EU Directives as a body governed by public law. As a contracting authority, National Museum of Ireland procurement is governed by the EU public procurement Directive, 2004/18/EC of 31 March 2004, as transposed into Irish law by SI329 of 20 June 2006.
The National Museum of Ireland's Procurement Policy covers all Museum expenditure, with the exception of heritage objects, stock for retail outlets, payroll-related costs and a substantive element of travel and subsistence expenditure. Acquisition of artefacts is covered under a separate acquisition and disposal policy.
The objective of the ‘National Museum of Ireland Procurement Policy’ is to ensure that the Museum complies fully with:
- The EU Procurement Directives and Irish Regulations
- The 2004 Public Procurement Guidelines - Competitive Process, issued by the Department of Finance
- The 2001 Code of Practice for the Governance of State Bodies, issued by the Department of Finance
- Best practice procurement generally
In accordance with our internal procedures and the European thresholds, the Museum will advertise its procurement opportunities as follows:
- Contract for Services below €25,000 may, from time to time, be advertised on the Museum website, at the bottom of this page
- Between €25,000 and €193,000: eTenders
- Above €193,000: Tenders Electronic Daily and eTenders
It is Museum policy to utilise the services of the Office of Public Works for procuring works and maintenance contracts.
Publication of FOI requests received by the National Museum of Ireland
The attached documents are logs of all of the requests submitted to this National Museum of Ireland under the Freedom of Information (FOI) Acts 2014. It provides the following information in relation to each request received:
- The reference Number assigned to the request by the National Museum of Ireland;
- The date on which the request was received in the Freedom of Information Unit of the National Museum of Ireland;
- The category of the person making the request, e.g. whether they are a journalist, interest group or company or an individual. This includes non-personal FOI requests only;
- A summary of the information or records requested;
- The date on which the National Museum of Ireland’s decision was issued to the applicant;
- A summary of that decision, e.g. whether the request was granted in full, part granted, refused or withdrawn and dealt with outside of the Freedom of Information Acts.
The table will be updated regularly. If you have any queries in relation to any of these requests or the operation of the Freedom of Information Acts in the National Museum of Ireland generally, please feel free to contact the FOI Unit (details below) and we will be happy to help you.
Where can I find more information?
If you would like to submit a request under the FOI Acts to the National Museum of Ireland or if you have any general queries in relation to the operation of the Freedom of Information Acts in the National Museum of Ireland generally, please feel free to contact the FOI Unit (details below) and we will be happy to help you.
National Museum of Ireland
Benburb Street Dublin 2
Further information in relation to the Freedom of Information Acts can also be found on the website, www.foi.gov.ie, which is maintained by the Freedom of Information Central Policy Unit of the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform.