MESOC Handbook

MESOC Handbook

MESOC Tools and Resources

“Measuring the Social Dimension of Culture: Handbook” aims to provide accessible information, based on the findings of MESOC research, for all those interested in understanding, enabling and assessing the social impact of culture.

Understanding the societal value of cultural activities and being able to measure and explain it is particularly relevant for those engaged in designing and implementing cultural projects on the ground, as well as for decision-makers and public and private managers who provide funding and establish priorities, and for researchers engaged in research and evaluation.

As a result, the MESOC Handbook is particularly targeted at:

  • Artists and cultural professionals involved in designing and implementing cultural projects that contribute to health and well-being, citizen engagement and urban or territorial renovation, who will be able to better articulate the value of their activities and revise them accordingly.
  • Policymakers and public managers who design and implement strategies, policies or programmes on the social impact of culture at the local, regional, national or European levels and need suitable tools for planning and measurement.
  • Managers of private funding programmes, who work to connect culture with social impact and need adequate measurement tools.
  • Researchers, trainers and students in cultural management and cultural policy, who will have a new set of resources available to assess, understand and explore the intersections between culture and other áreas of societal value.

The Handbook has been structured as a set of resources, texts and elements for reflection around the topic of social impact assessment in the field of culture.

The publication covers the following topics:

  • Chapter 1 introduces the MESOC project and the book contents
  • Chapter 2 covers the main themes addressed by MESOC, allowing readers to become familiar with the ways in which cultural projects and policies contribute to health and well-being, people’s engagement and participation, and urban and territorial renovation.
  • Chapter 3 presents an overview of standard approaches to the measurement of the societal impact of culture and a description of the Convergent Model, highlighting its added value.
  • Chapter 4 provides a set of recommendations for policymakers and cultural project managers, describing how best to apply the findings of MESOC and the tools presented throughout the book.

The book is complemented with several case studies, boxes with further recommended readings, additional tools to explore and a set of questions for reflection.

The Handbook has been edited by the team of the University of Barcelona, with the coordination and editorial support of Trànsit Projectes.