This work aims to determine the practices in the valuation of public heritage assets by analyzing the case of Natural History Museum of Florence. After examined the main recommendations in the valuation of cultural assets from practice and theory, the authors are checking the research hypothesis that monetary assessment of collections may improve the discharge of internal and external accountability duties of the museum, by screening the methods useful for this goal. Among these methods, a particular attention is dedicated to the expert appraisal as a proxy of the collections market value. The case study, that has been selected because of its criticality, confirms the research hypothesis, even if some limitations and potential developments emerge from the analysis and are discussed in the conclusions.
Keywords: Museum heritage, public heritage assets, expert assessment, market value, Contingent Valuation Method, Natural History Museum of Florence.