Ethnographic Collection of the Department

The department's collections can be subdivided into two main parts: The collection of objects, with approx. 1,200 objects.The collection of photographs, with approx. 6,000 photos (b/w), 500 slides, and approx. 3,200 glass plates.

In 2001 for the first time ever the department was tasked with sifting through and organising the archive and with taking an inventory, all of which was conducted on Karl R. Wernhart's initiative in his capacity as the head of the department. This task was taken on by Igor Eberhard, who created his own entry system, in particular for the photographic records.Since the 2005 summer term a motivated team of teaching assistants and field trainees has worked on both the scientific analysis and the digital archiving of the collections. A collaboration with the University of Vienna's Unidam database project will help provide teachers and students with access to the results of the digitalisation process. In the near future said collaboration should facilitate at least virtual access to the collections.One can still only see the physical objects by making an appointment, though the viewing is limited to the display collection, which showcases exhibitions on specific subjects. Given that one of our priorities is to promote the scientific analysis of the collections, we look forward to MA theses and PhD dissertations that help to advance said priority.

Ethnographic Collection logo


The "Heidelberger Stellungnahme" on the handling of objects from colonial contexts (in German)
Link to PDF

Upcoming Guided Tours

  • Monday, 10.6., 10:00 (englisch)
  • Friday, 21.6., 18:00

    meeting point: 4th floor, in front of the Sitzungszimmer (C0424)
    Please register two days in advance here:


    • Virtual Exhibition "Leichen im Keller - Human Remains between Restitution and Whereabouts"
    • Am 30.11.2018 fand am IKSA der Workshop "Präventive Konservierung und IPM - Integraded Pest Management" in Kooperation mit der Universitätsbibliothek Wien und der Gesellschaft für Universitätssammlungen statt. Zur Nachlese
    • Objekt des Monats November der Sammlungen an der Uni Wien: Übermodellierter Schädel
    • Artikel im Standard "Der tote Körper als Schauobjekt" von Doris Griesser: Link zum Artikel 
    • 2. Workshop der AG Sammlungserhalt am 30. November 2018 zum Thema „Präventive Konservierung und IPM – Integrated Pest Management". Mehr Info
    • Workshop "Tote Körper zwischen Nutzen und öffentlichem Ärgernis" am 7.-8. November 2018 Mehr Info
    • Am 14. Juni 2018 fand das 19. Sammlungstreffen am IKSA statt, in dessen Rahmen das neue Depot der Ethnographischen Sammlung eröffnet wurde. Zur Nachlese
    • Am 14. November 2017 fand das 18. Sammlungstreffen in der Universitätsbibliothek Wien statt. Als Vertreter des IKSA und des Projekts "Ethnographische Datenarchivierung" nahm Igor Eberhard daran teil. Zur Nachlese