This theme focuses on the economic impact of a cultural heritage intervention, which can be linked to a wide range of economic activities. European cultural heritage is considered a valuable resource for economic growth and employment, and it can have crossover effects in other economic sectors like tourism. Interventions on cultural heritage can be powerful driving forces of inclusive local development, as well as enhance regional competitiveness.
According to the Report on the implementation, results and overall assessment of the European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018, over 300 000 people are employed in the EU cultural heritage sector and 7.8 million EU jobs are indirectly linked to heritage (e.g. interpretation and security). Even though economics-based tools in cultural heritage decision making were not considered until the 1990s, it is nowadays widely accepted that cultural heritage has an impact on economic development and prosperity.
Cultural interventions can be considered as a source of income and employment, as well as a driver of national/local prosperity. In the case of the underwater natural and cultural heritage in the BlueMed project, its conservation plan also included the generation of circular economy for a positive impact at a local level, through diving tourism and by creating local job openings, from professional diver instructors to web developers.
“Detach the cities from totally relying on tourism: diversify the economy in stages while being mindful of the groups of people already employed in the tourism Industry.”
The preservation and tourism offer project proposal for the Belogradchik fortress in Bulgaria is a good example to show how the overall quality of life in the area is aimed through economic strategies. With an environmentally friendly use of the unique natural and cultural resources and values, the project wants to enhance tourism offer and demand, as well as diversify touristic products for an all-year-round offer. It also intends to reduce the unemployment rates and promote local tourism-related businesses.
Click on a theme to follow its story: