A pilot national survey has highlighted fundamental managerial problems that seem to link the most disparate university collections. The recent report provided some useful case studies of university museums and galleries looking outwards from their parent institutions to serve a wider community. The purpose of the Petrie Museum has been debated throughout its history. The university museum will always have an important 'internal' purpose, but the Petrie Museum, needs to expand its horizons if it is to fulfil its potential. The Petrie Museum is now named after and therefore naturally associated with the great archaeologist William Matthew Flinders Petrie. Certainly the bulk of the museum's current collection consists of objects Petrie bought on his annual seasons in Egypt between 1880 and 1926. The university bought the collection in 1913 and by 1915 Petrie had arranged it, together with the Edwards library, in cases on the second floor of the main building, where it stayed until the Second World War.