The Dutch Heritage Monitor – a database of 97 indicators


The Cultural Heritage Agency of The Netherlands launched last year a new website called ‘Erfgoedmonitor’ which currently identifies a total of 97 indicators on the state of the Dutch heritage. The database is operated via the software “Swing” which allows to make refined searches and export facts and figures as a spreadsheet. The ‘Heritage Monitor’ is divided into four main topics: collections, historic landscapes, monuments, archaeology, and others. Each topic consists of several indicators or metrics. The data come from different sources: records of the National Heritage Board, research studies, and other parties. At the bottom of each indicator is mentioned the source, the reference date and the method of collection. Not only national data but also data at regional level (province, municipality) are provided where possible.

This monitoring system is very comprehensive and represents an exemplary project at the European level. The ‘Heritage Monitor’ is aimed to be used in the long run in order to reveal development trends in the heritage sector. It gives the state authorities a major insight into the development and status of the heritage in the Netherlands and represents a precious help for evidence-based policy. The website is accessible for everyone and relevant to all heritage professionals. A report of 10 indicators as well as some general information about ‘Erfgoedmonitor’ will be published in English on the website before the end of 2015.

In addition, the Cultural Heritage Agency of The Netherlands produced its first ‘National Heritage Review’ in 2009 which recaps in one document all the collected data and measures about heritage management. The next ‘National Heritage Review’ will be published in 2016 and will represent an evidence-based evaluation of the Dutch heritage policy.

Visit the ‘Heritage Monitor’ website here: