Making Culture Count: the Politics of Cultural Measurement, 2015

Editors: Lachlan MacDowall, Marnie Badham, Emma Blomkamp and Kim Dunphy.

Culture and cultural development are now internationally recognised as important dimensions of contemporary governance and public policy. The production of accurate and relevant data has become central to cultural policy and how the cultural lives of citizens are understood. Conceptual and practical developments in measurement tools, such as cultural indicators, have the potential to enrich our understanding of culture’s role in wellbeing, vitality and citizenship. From UNESCO’s benchmarks for cultural freedom to comparative measures of provision and creative cities indices, diverse approaches to quantifying culture and tracking progress now exist. But how useful are all these measures? Are they helping us to keep track of what matters? What opportunities exist to contest, refine or democratise these systems of measurement? This book was co-edited ny CDN’s Research Program Manager Kim Dunphy with colleagues from the University of Melbourne’s Centre for Cultural Partnerships, Lachlan MacDowall, Marnie Badham and Emma Blomkamp.

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