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Impact of Cultural Tourism upon Urban Economies: An Econometric Exercise


  • Elena Bellini

    (Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei)

  • Ugo Gasparino

    (Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei)

  • Barbara Del Corpo

    (Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei)

  • William Malizia

    (Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei)


In recent years, interest in tourism has spread rapidly throughout many small and medium European cities, which previously have not necessarily considered themselves as tourist destinations. Tourism is increasingly seen as a potential lever towards high economic growth, measured both in terms of income and employment. In the present Working Paper we report the analysis on the economic impact undertaken in the framework of the PICTURE Project, showing the results of a novel econometric exercise to statistically assess the impacts of cultural tourism upon European municipalities. More precisely the analysis aims at estimating the effects of tourism specialisation on local income and prices. The Working Paper is built as follows. Section 1 presents and discusses secondary data about tourism facts and figures, including the economic impact of tourism upon European economies, with a focus on cultural tourism. An extensive review of literature, which identifies the main categories of impacts and the currently available methodologies to assess them, is undertaken. Section 2 focuses on the state of the art. Section 3 describes the database built for the analysis, sources and variables. In order to visually represent the spatial variability of the main parameters, a series of thematic maps at NUTS 3 level(“Maps of European tourism”), using GIS (Geographical Information System) are also included in the Working Paper. Section 4 shows the results of the econometric analysis of European panel data for the estimation of the effects of tourism specialisation on both local incomes and prices. Section 5 concludes.

Suggested Citation

  • Elena Bellini & Ugo Gasparino & Barbara Del Corpo & William Malizia, 2007. "Impact of Cultural Tourism upon Urban Economies: An Econometric Exercise," Working Papers 2007.85, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
  • Handle: RePEc:fem:femwpa:2007.85

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Copeland, Brian R, 1991. "Tourism, Welfare and De-industrialization in a Small Open Economy," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 58(232), pages 515-529, November.
    2. Michael B. Devereux & Charles Engel, 2001. "The Optimal Choice of Exchange Rate Regime: Price-Setting Rules and Internationalized Production," NBER Chapters,in: Topics in Empirical International Economics: A Festschrift in Honor of Robert E. Lipsey, pages 163-194 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. N. Gregory Mankiw & David Romer & David N. Weil, 1992. "A Contribution to the Empirics of Economic Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 107(2), pages 407-437.
    4. Ciccone, Antonio & Hall, Robert E, 1996. "Productivity and the Density of Economic Activity," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(1), pages 54-70, March.
    5. Rinaldo Brau & Alessandro Lanza & Francesco Pigliaru, 2003. "How Fast are the Tourism Countries Growing? The cross-country evidence," Working Papers 2003.85, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
    6. Corden, W Max & Neary, J Peter, 1982. "Booming Sector and De-Industrialisation in a Small Open Economy," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 92(368), pages 825-848, December.
    7. Gianmarco I.P. Ottaviano & Giovanni Peri, 2016. "The economic value of cultural diversity: evidence from US cities," World Scientific Book Chapters,in: The Economics of International Migration, chapter 7, pages 229-264 World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    8. M. Thea Sinclair, 1998. "Tourism and economic development: A survey," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 34(5), pages 1-51.
    9. Antonio Ciccone & Giovanni Peri, 2002. "Indentifying human capital externalities: Theory with an application to US cities," Economics Working Papers 611, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, revised Jul 2005.
    10. Juan Luis Eugenio-Martín & Noelia Martín Morales & Riccardo Scarpa, 2004. "Tourism and Economic Growth in Latin American Countries: A Panel Data Approach," Working Papers 2004.26, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
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    Cited by:

    1. Nadia Campaniello & Matteo Richiardi, 2011. "Beggar-thy-neighbor in Art Consumption: Evidence from the “Bel Paese”," LABORatorio R. Revelli Working Papers Series 116, LABORatorio R. Revelli, Centre for Employment Studies.

    More about this item


    Cultural Tourism; Economic Growth;

    JEL classification:

    • O4 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity
    • R0 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General
    • L83 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - Sports; Gambling; Restaurants; Recreation; Tourism

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