Making a generic property


I have a class that stores a serialized value and a type. I want to have a property/method returning the value already casted:

public String Value { get; set; }

public Type TheType { get; set; }

public typeof(TheType) CastedValue { get { return Convert.ChangeType(Value, typeof(_Type)); }

Is this possible in C#?

5/24/2012 5:47:25 PM

It's possible if the class containing the property is generic, and you declare the property using the generic parameter:

class Foo<TValue> {
    public string Value { get; set; }
    public TValue TypedValue {
        get {
            return (TValue)Convert.ChangeType(Value, typeof(TValue));

An alternative would be to use a generic method instead:

class Foo {
    public string Value { get; set; }
    public Type TheType { get; set; }

    public T CastValue<T>() {
         return (T)Convert.ChangeType(Value, typeof(T));

You can also use the System.ComponentModel.TypeConverter classes to convert, since they allow a class to define it's own converter.

Edit: note that when calling the generic method, you must specify the generic type parameter, since the compiler has no way to infer it:

Foo foo = new Foo();
foo.Value = "100";
foo.Type = typeof(int);

int c = foo.CastValue<int>();

You have to know the type at compile time. If you don't know the type at compile time then you must be storing it in an object, in which case you can add the following property to the Foo class:

public object ConvertedValue {
    get {
        return Convert.ChangeType(Value, Type);
1/30/2018 9:29:24 PM

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