Cultural Economics : Theory, Subject Code Cc4111

2997 Words Dec 7th, 2014 12 Pages
Cultural Economics: theory

Subject code CC4111
Academic year 2014 – 2015, Term 1.

Dr. Filip Vermeylen
Dr. Erwin Dekker

Final Essay

Museums pricing

Michailidou Maria-Eleni


To charge or not to charge? Which are the different price setting mechanisms used by museums and how do they differ when they belong to the public sector? In which ways could museums increase their revenues?

Museums are important institutions that aim in the preservation and exhibition of heritage for the public benefit. However, since they are part of the economy, they are often subject to “dynamic change” (Johnson, 2003, p. 317). Due to the changes of the last few decades, the sector has engaged into several different price-setting mechanisms and has questioned intensively the role of pricing in museums (Rentschler, Hede, & White, 2007).
In this paper I will first introduce the debate on whether or not should museums charge entry fees and how does this affect their identity. Then I will focus on the institutional approach of pricing and the alternative methods of pricing. In the end I will suggest different methods for museums to increase their revenues.

To charge or not to charge
One of the biggest debates amongst the academic world lies on whether museums should charge or not entry fees. According to Bailey et al., the particular debate is a combination of political, institutional, cultural and educational issues (Bailey, Falconer, Foley,…
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