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MEASURING CULTURAL VALUE (PHASE 2) Dr Claire Donovan, Brunel University.

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Presentation on theme: "MEASURING CULTURAL VALUE (PHASE 2) Dr Claire Donovan, Brunel University."— Presentation transcript:

1 MEASURING CULTURAL VALUE (PHASE 2) Dr Claire Donovan, Brunel University

2 PRICELESS? A HOLISTIC APPROACH TO ‘MEASURING’ CULTURAL VALUE Dr Claire Donovan, Brunel University

3 The context  AHRC/ESRC Public Service Placement Fellowship in partnership with Department of Culture, Media and Sport  competitive research grant  based at DCMS  part of wider DCMS initiative  Phase One (O’Brien, 2010) concluded that the cultural sector must use the concepts and tools of economics to make the case for public funding

4 The very idea of measuring cultural value  highly contested territory  cultural value is either...  measureable by assigning monetary value, e.g. willingness to pay choice analysis hedonic pricing  or ‘intangible’ so cannot be measured at all  two cultures of valuation:  cynics  sentimentalists

5 Two cultures of valuation “What cynics you fellows are!” “What is a cynic?” “A man who knows the price of everything and the value of nothing.” “And a sentimentalist, my dear Darlington, is a man who sees an absurd value in everything, and doesn’t know the market price of a single thing.” - Oscar Wilde, Lady Windermere’s Fan, Act 3.

6 The approach  A ‘cynical-sentimental’ approach  mirrors debates in assessing research impact, especially in humanities, creative arts and social sciences (Donovan 2008; 2011) resistance to economic reductionism ‘state of the art’ includes, and extends beyond, economic measures  Empirical testing of measures  do these potentially add value to making policy decisions about funding the cultural sector?  include measures of supposedly ‘intangible’ benefits alongside indicators drawn from cultural economics

7 The approach  Cross-sector credibility  Stakeholder involvement  workshops  the ‘Priceless?’ blog; Twitter the ‘Priceless?’ blog  Stakeholder consensus  A ‘cynical-sentimental’ solution  Does the use of social media authentically represent public engagement in the cultural value debate? Welcome to the measuring cultural value debate which began in 2003 …. I wonder if you are trying to reinvent the wheel?

8 Phase Two conclusions  A holistic approach to ‘measurement’  quantitative (monetary)  quantitative (non-monetary)  qualitative indicators  narrative approaches  Proportionality  ‘measures’ to fit scale of enterprise and desired outcomes  Abandon ‘toolkit’  sector guidance more valuable what ‘measures’ to use and when

9 Next steps  Final report (Summer 2012)  Dissemination  final report online (and hard copy?)  the ‘Priceless?’ blog the ‘Priceless?’ blog  academic conferences and seminars  academic journal papers (with Dave O’Brien)  SRAC  Practitioner-oriented conferences and seminars  Can these novel approaches apply to ‘measuring’ other areas of public investment?

10 Any questions?


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