Six projects that aim to evaluate the value of culture and heritage to society have been announced as part of the Department for Culture, Media and Sport’s (DCMS) Culture and Heritage Capital Programme.
Founded in 2021, the programme assesses the social and economic benefits of culture and heritage weighed against their costs with the aim of providing the government with guidance on how to spend taxpayers’ money.
The latest projects include a case study for local and regional culture-led initiatives and levelling up focusing on National Museums Liverpool Waterfront Transformation, led by the University of Liverpool, which will receive £420,657.
Another study led by the University of Portsmouth will receive £359,015 to assess the economic and cultural value of digital culture and heritage assets.
Each of the six projects will receive between £359,015 and £528,825 financed by a £3.1m research funding round from the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) and DCMS.
The project leaders will collaborate with stakeholders, including Historic England, National Museums Liverpool and the National Trust.
Arts and Heritage Minister Lord Parkinson said it’s important to measure the benefits of arts and culture to people's lives “to make the most effective decisions to maximise their potential – especially where taxpayers’ money is being invested.”
AHRC Executive Chair Professor Christopher Smith said, “The culture and heritage sectors are a vital part of our economy, but we do not have a clear or agreed set of criteria for measuring all their relevant benefits, including the undoubted impacts of intangible benefits. This has a significant impact on policymaking.
“This project will help give us a better basis on which to evaluate the contribution of culture and heritage to society."