Copenhagen Economics has conducted a study on the economic impact of the Danish public library for The Danish Think Tank Libraries of the Future.
The Danish public libraries provide multiple services to the Danish public today, which overall seems to be well received by the public.
However, the contributions are often measured in terms of library use (e.g. how many books were borrowed) and user satisfaction surveys, which are far from adequate when we want to discuss the role libraries play in modern society. In this study, we dig deeper and provide the first assessment of the economic value of the public libraries in Denmark.
The main conclusions are
- The public library contribute with DKK 2bn to Danish GDP each year in the long run by stimulating educational attainment.
- Danes are willing to pay DKK 4bn for the public library, but only pay DKK 2.5bn through taxes.
- Libraries are valued for their social and cultural contribution to society, and not simply because people can use the materials themselves. A large part of the value comes from people who are not regular library users ie. the existence of a positive externality.
For further information, please contact Partner Christian Jervelund