In 2020, the Eurocities WG Cultural services and culture for inclusive cities focused on how to measure the cross-sectoral value and impact of culture, particularly the social impact, across a range of demographics. This would in turn help cities to advocate for greater investment in culture. As many cities admitted they lacked reliable or suitable data, knowledge or methodologies, there was a strong wish to gain more information and guidance on this topic.
In particular, the WG wanted to explore the following questions:
- What difference do arts and culture make to people’s lives? And how can we measure this difference?
- How can cities evidence the impact of arts and culture activities in terms of health, well-being and communities?
- How can cultural professionals make sure that the cultural sector will be considered in times of crisis, for its impacts on society at large?
To find some answers, we organized two webinars around the topic, have launched a call for contributions and produced a digest of case studies. This digest for the benefit of all members, which collates presentations and experiences exchanged at the webinars. Various cities have kindly contributed their stories and approaches, which we are happy to share with you.
This is a huge and challenging topic, and this digest gives only an impression of what was discussed, but there are many useful references included. We hope that it will trigger ideas that you can implement within your own cities!