'Dynamic socio-economic impact: a holistic analytical framework for cultural heritage sites,' chapter in Heritage Impact 2005: Proceedings of the first international symposium on the socio-economic impact of cultural heritage. J McLoughlin, J Kaminski and B Sodagar. (2006) Archaeolingua: Budapest. pp 43-57, ISBN 963 8046 66 X
My work, in partnership with Sodagar & Kaminski, built on the analysis of available techniques and the review of existing studies (which in general only focus on specific types of impact) to formulate an instrument capable of being applied in a wide variety of circumstances and assisting heritage managers interested in understanding the socio-economic impact of cultural heritage assets.
The model was created after extensive consultation with curators, managers, and practitioners in the heritage sector across Europe. The model has subsequently been evaluated with real case studies and has now been adopted for wider deployment in association with social enterprises in the UK and has been refined using a number of ‘real-world’ test cases to produce training materials in applying the framework.
The model was first presented at the Heritage Impact conference, organised by our CUBIST Research Group at the Royal Pavilion, Brighton in 2005. Since then it has been extensively disseminated in conferences across Europe. This combination of practitioner and academic review has served to strengthen the model.
The Holistic Impact model is an original contribution to modelling in the heritage sector. It identifies four key impact divers: the mission, stakeholders, internal aspects (the site’s resource and management decision making) and external impact divers (macro and micro external factors). From this analysis it is important to prioritise impacts for measurement and then to select appropriate impact measurement methods.
The model is a fusion of influences from heritage management, cultural economics, and business strategy represents a new way of looking at the heritage sector. This research formed the basis for the group’s work for subsequently formulating techniques for assessing socio-economic impact of the contribution of investments in technology to impact. The EPOCH work in this area was described by the EU reviewers of EPOCH project in November 2005 as “groundbreaking” – a clear testament to the significance they attached to the research.
The model has provided the key foundation for further impact studies, training in the heritage sector and has been adopted by other research organisations as the underlying methodology for their heritage impact work (eg University of Queensland).