Introduction. Since museums are community focused, they play an important social role acting as a cohesion factor and therefore generate social value. On the other hand, museums educate the public, therefore in a broad sense, they have a public mission which is valuable by definition. While monetary gains are measurable and becoming more important, we argue that social cohesion and museums’ commitment to communities should prevail, as museums are creators of cultural capital and individual and collective meaning. Finally, some related discussions and future directions of research are proposed.
Aim of the study. In this paper we discuss museums as cultural institutions, as important part of cultural heritage and creators of cultural capital. Museums are also credible economic actors: they generate revenue and, in many ways, they behave like a for-profit organization. We discuss the economics of museums in terms of supply, demand, competition on the marketplace and output.
Keywords: cultural heritage, museums, economic value
JEL Classification: Z11, Z32, M20