The cultural sector faces the conundrum of proving its value in a way that can be understood by decision-makers. As Smith (2010b) has noted, arts and cultural
organisations face a 'cooler climate' than the one that prevailed during the early 2000s.
As a result it will not be enough for arts and culture to resort to claiming to be a unique or special case compared with other government sectors (Matarasso 2009). Since the 1980s the value of the cultural sector has been demonstrated through the lens of
'impact', whether economic (e.g. Myerscough 1988) or social (e.g. Matarasso 1997).
However in recent years there has been recognition, both within central government and in parts of the publically funded cultural sector, of the need to more clearly articulate the value of culture using methods which fit in with central government's
decision-making. Thus the cultural sector will need to use the tools and concepts of
economics to fully state their benefits in the prevailing language of policy appraisal and
evaluation (Bakhshi, Freeman and Hitchen, 2009).