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Cultural participation in Europe: Can we identify common determinants?


  • Martin Falk

    () (Austrian Institute of Economic Research (WIFO))

  • Tally Katz-Gerro

    () (University of Haifa)


Abstract This article examines the extent to which demographic and socioeconomic characteristics influence the decision to visit and the number of visits to museums, art galleries, historical monuments, and archaeological sites. Using ordered probit models based on data for 350,000 adults in 24 EU countries, we find that the likelihood and number of such visits depend mainly on per capita household income, education, labor market status, and country of birth. Attained characteristics such as education and income have remarkably similar positive effects on cultural participation across the countries in our sample, while the effects of age and gender are both weaker and less consistent across countries. We conclude that cultural distinctions along the lines of socioeconomic attainment are stable even in very different country contexts with varying cultural policies and economic conditions. We discuss the way these results inform three research topics: identification of the characteristics of visitors to museums and historical sites in order to attract new audiences; the effect of public spending on culture on accessibility to cultural sites; and cross-national variation in cultural stratification.

Suggested Citation

  • Martin Falk & Tally Katz-Gerro, 2016. "Cultural participation in Europe: Can we identify common determinants?," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer;The Association for Cultural Economics International, vol. 40(2), pages 127-162, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:jculte:v:40:y:2016:i:2:d:10.1007_s10824-015-9242-9
    DOI: 10.1007/s10824-015-9242-9

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Tristan Masters & Roslyn Russell & Robert Brooks, 2011. "The demand for creative arts in regional Victoria, Australia," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 43(5), pages 619-629.
    2. van der Ploeg, Frederick, 2006. "The Making of Cultural Policy: A European Perspective," Handbook of the Economics of Art and Culture, Elsevier.
    3. Amemiya, Takeshi, 1981. "Qualitative Response Models: A Survey," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 19(4), pages 1483-1536, December.
    4. Elina Lampi & Matilda Orth, 2009. "Who Visits the Museums? A Comparison between Stated Preferences and Observed Effects of Entrance Fees," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 62(1), pages 85-102, February.
    5. Harris, Mark N. & Zhao, Xueyan, 2007. "A zero-inflated ordered probit model, with an application to modelling tobacco consumption," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 141(2), pages 1073-1099, December.
    6. Francesca Borgonovi, 2004. "Performing arts attendance: an economic approach," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 36(17), pages 1871-1885.
    7. Ateca-Amestoy, Victoria & Prieto-Rodriguez, Juan, 2013. "Forecasting accuracy of behavioural models for participation in the arts," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 229(1), pages 124-131.
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    Cited by:

    1. Patrizia Lattarulo & Marco Mariani & Laura Razzolini, 2017. "Nudging museums attendance: a field experiment with high school teens," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer;The Association for Cultural Economics International, vol. 41(3), pages 259-277, August.
    2. Sara Suarez-Fernandez & Maria Jose Perez-Villadoniga & Juan Prieto-Rodriguez, 2018. "Are We (Un)Consciously Driven by First Impressions? Price Declarations vs. Observed Cinema Demand when VAT Increases," ACEI Working Paper Series AWP-02-2018, Association for Cultural Economics International, revised Jul 2018.
    3. repec:kap:jculte:v:41:y:2017:i:2:d:10.1007_s10824-017-9295-z is not listed on IDEAS


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