Analysing Determinants of Match Attendance in the European Rugby Cup
AbstractThe economic literature on professional sports leagues suggests supporters’ utility depends on uncertainty of outcome (competitive balance) and the quality of play. Unlike soccer, where the Champions League is dominated by teams from larger countries, our analysis indicates that the ERC exhibits high degrees of both dynamic and inter-league competitive balance. Using data from 1,096 matches played over 17 seasons, we analyse match attendances in the pool stages of the European Rugby Cup (ERC), a competition that involves teams from the three main European rugby leagues. The results indicate that the quality of the home team is the main determinant of match attendances, although a strong visiting team also raises attendances. Medium-term (seasonal) uncertainty, which has received less attention in the literature, appears far more important than short-run (match) uncertainty. Measures designed to make matches more attractive, e.g. bonus points for high scoring, appear to have had little effect on attendances.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by School Of Economics, University College Dublin in its series Working Papers with number 201228.
Length: 29 pages
Date of creation: 12 Oct 2012
Date of revision:
Professional team sports; competitive balance; consumer demand;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- D12 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Empirical Analysis
- D21 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Firm Behavior: Theory
- L22 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Firm Organization and Market Structure
- L23 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Organization of Production
- L83 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - Sports; Gambling; Restaurants; Recreation; Tourism
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2012-10-20 (All new papers)
- NEP-EUR-2012-10-20 (Microeconomic European Issues)
- NEP-SPO-2012-10-20 (Sports & Economics)
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