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Competing impure public goods and the sustainability of the theater arts


  • Tyler Pugliese

    () (Economics Dept., Rochester Institute of Technology)

  • Jeffrey Wagner

    () (Economics Dept., Rochester Institute of Technology)


The general purpose of this paper is to extend the literature regarding public good provision when consumers may contribute via consumption of an impure public good and/or by donating directly to the public good. Standard models pose consumer utility as a function of one impure public good and one or more private goods. Our model features two competing impure public goods and two private goods: one that is a conventional substitute good and one that is a numeraire. We build most directly upon Kotchen's (2005) model of “green” consumption of impure public goods. We propose national and local live theater arts as an example of competing impure public goods. Our model shows that if local and national live theater are substitutes, and the national live theater (such as the Met) is strengthened via technological change (for instance, via simulcasts into local venues), the overall sustainability of the live theater arts may be diminished.

Suggested Citation

  • Tyler Pugliese & Jeffrey Wagner, 2011. "Competing impure public goods and the sustainability of the theater arts," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 31(2), pages 1295-1303.
  • Handle: RePEc:ebl:ecbull:eb-11-00119

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Jesús Crespo Cuaresma & Julia Wörz, 2005. "On Export Composition and Growth," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer;Institut für Weltwirtschaft (Kiel Institute for the World Economy), vol. 141(1), pages 33-49, April.
    2. Hausmann, Ricardo & Rodrik, Dani, 2003. "Economic development as self-discovery," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(2), pages 603-633, December.
    3. Bassam Abual-Foul, 2004. "Testing the export-led growth hypothesis: evidence from Jordan," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 11(6), pages 393-396.
    4. Bayudan-Dacuycuy, Connie & Lim, Joseph Anthony, 2014. "Export Sophistication and Export-Led Growth: An Analysis of the Export Basket of Selected East Asian Economies," MPRA Paper 64650, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Tecson, Gwendolyn R., 1992. "Performance, Competitiveness and Structure of Philippine Manufacturing Industries: A Research Design," Working Papers WP 1992-02, Philippine Institute for Development Studies.
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    More about this item


    donation; impure public goods; simulcast; sustainability; theater arts;

    JEL classification:

    • H4 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods
    • Z1 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics


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