In a continuing management shake-up, the Smithsonian Institution has restructured several senior staff positions and accepted the resignation of Tom McCance, the director of membership and development, effective this Saturday.

McCance was hired two years ago by Tom Lovejoy, assistant secretary for external affairs, to generate substantial long-term contributions to the institution, and said his departure reflects the Smithsonian's decision to deal with its financial problems by pursuing smaller annual gifts. Smithsonian Secretary Robert McC. Adams has assigned Lovejoy's deputy, Marc Pachter, to serve as acting director in McCance's place.

Adams also announced that John Jameson, assistant secretary for administration since 1976, will become a senior adviser responsible for various unspecified projects. His position will be restructured, and Nancy Suttenfield, the Smithsonian's acting undersecretary, will become assistant secretary for finance and administration after Carmen Turner, general manager of Metro, becomes undersecretary on Dec. 16.

Smithsonian spokeswoman Madeleine Jacobs said further changes are in the works. Adams was unavailable for comment but said in a memo to the staff that "clearly these announced changes could have implications for staff members in the offices mentioned." He urged those concerned to call his executive assistant "to answer any staffing issues related to these changes."

The Smithsonian management restructuring first became apparent in July with the abrupt firing of undersecretary Dean Anderson. At that time, Anderson said financial problems were likely to lead to program reductions, possible firings and further restructuring.

Adams said an ongoing management review indicated that changes were desirable even in the absence of a financial crisis. At that time, Adams declined to go into detail about his thinking. "I don't think discussions of nuances of internal management ... is something that you can expect to have spelled out," he said.

McCance said yesterday that he could not persuade Adams to undertake a capital campaign, which would have taken at least three years to launch at an annual cost of about $2 million. Considering the current economic climate, McCance said, Adams "was skittish about investing money in the development of the longer-range, bigger gifts." Instead, McCance said that over the summer Adams had become more interested in "annual gifts, which would have to be repeated each year {and} would be smaller in nature." McCance said he is not interested in fund-raising efforts of that type.

McCance said he believes the Smithsonian would attract major gifts because it "is a beloved institution." The Smithsonian has not undertaken such an effort before and "it takes a leap of faith," he said.

McCance said he has worked with Oxford University over the past 18 months on such an effort and the institution has raised $200 million. With the Smithsonian's 150th anniversary approaching in 1996, he had hoped to get positive results with a similar campaign.

Before coming to the Smithsonian, McCance spent eight years as managing director of the Yale Alumni Fund. During that time, he said, annual giving went from $16 million to $34 million. But he said that job was relatively simple because the fund-raising mechanisms were in place and "it was a matter of putting your foot on the accelerator."

In his memo, Adams said he was "sorry to report" McCance's resignation. He said that Pachter and Marie Mattson, special assistant to Adams, will work with an outside consultant to review "the entire spectrum" of development activities. The Smithsonian can "establish a better integrated program that can respond more effectively to the needs of the Institution," the memo said.

The reorganization of Jameson's job is linked with the departure of Smithsonian Treasurer Ann Leven, who left to become deputy treasurer at the National Gallery of Art. Several functions formerly in the treasurer's bailiwick will become Suttenfield's responsibility. Those include the office of accounting and financial services, the office of financial management and planning, the office of risk management and the office of sponsored projects.

Several sources said the changes reflect a desire on Adams's part to take tighter control of the institution. Jacobs confirmed that Adams is working with Steve Lorch, a Cambridge, Mass.-based management consultant with an expertise in institutional restructuring and in "information resource management." The two became acquainted when Adams was a professor and then provost at the University of Chicago, Jacobs said.