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Museums as Economic Engines

The museum sector is essential to the national economy — generating GDP, stimulating jobs, and contributing taxes. These economic effects can be measured using a standard technique known as economic impact analysis. This kind of analysis measures not just the direct (operational) contribution of the museum sector but also the impact that is felt as its activities ripple out across the economy. This includes, for example, the impact generated as museums makes purchases from a wider supply chain, known as the indirect impact. It also measures the effects that are felt in the wider consumer economy as employees in museums and their supply chains spend their wages on things like meals in restaurants or going to the gym (known as the induced impact). Each of these economic channels can be quantified in terms of a contribution to GDP, jobs, and the amount of tax revenue that is generated for all levels of government.

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