In the past, various Dutch government agencies were responsible for the KNIR. This changed in 1991 when responsibility for the Institute was transferred to a governing board whose members come from the Dutch university community. The University of Groningen (RUG) serves as treasurer and as such bears direct responsibility.
In addition to the University of Groningen, the five other Dutch universities are represented in the board of the KNIR: Leiden University, University of Amsterdam, Utrecht University, VU University Amsterdam and Radboud University Nijmegen.
A Scientific Advisory Council (Wetenschappelijke Adviesraad) advises the KNIR on policy and policy evaluations.
The KNIR is managed by a scientific director posted to Rome for a term of five years. The director is assisted by a director of operations management directly affiliated with the RUG and located in Groningen.
In addition to the director, there are three other academic staff members who work fulltime for the Dutch university community. Each of the three staff members are posted to Rome for a three-year term. They are responsible for teaching and research in the areas of archaeology, art history and history.
The Institute also has a permanent team of local staff who work in the library, the secretariat and the accounts department and maintain the offices and guestrooms and facilities on the premises.