Economics and Built Heritage – Seminar proceedings
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Economics and Built Heritage – Seminar proceedings

Built heritage – value adding sector

Among researchers of cultural economy, there is a broad agreement that historic preservation is a societally significant activity and that its benefits outweight the costs. Heritage can be seen as an asset in the knowledge and creative economy. However, there is a lot do to raise the economic analysis of built heritage to a level where it truly helps decision-making in the various scales from single projects to national budgets. This publication contributes to raising the ‘strategic’ discourse of heritage economics in the Nordic countries. It also shows some examples how heritage valuation could perform in planning and decision-making. The ‘Economics and Built Heritage in the Nordic Countries’ project, funded by the Nordic Council of Ministers, has aimed to raise public awareness about the value adding potential of heritage. It has gathered information and data sources and is preparing a Nordic and Baltic research agenda and a network of researchers across national borders. This publications includes key contributions of the conference ‘Built Heritage – Value Adding Sector’ organised by the project in Helsinki in December 2005.

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English
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Author(s):
Nordic Council of Ministers

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Conservation has transformed in the last generation, from a fairly closeted practice pursued as an end in itself, to a field increasingly viewed as the means to other social ends, such as greater sense of place, sustainable development, cultural diversity or tourism income. As part of this transformation, economic concepts, values, goals, and discourse applied to heritage have grown in prominence. This change is congruent with the longer-brewing process that has brought conservation activity routinely into partnership with forces for economic development and community improvement. Given these changes, it is urgent for conservation professionals and advocates to have some fluency with economic discourse.