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Cultural participation and tourism flows: An empirical investigation of Italian provinces


  • Borowiecki, Karol Jan

    (Department of Business and Economics)

  • Castiglione, Concetta

    (Department of Economics)


The importance of cultural events for attracting tourism has been often posited in research, however rarely tested in relation to non-cultural activities. This paper investigates the association between participation in entertainment activities and tourism flows in Italian provinces, and find that admission to theatre-type activities increases as the number of domestic tourists goes up, whereas admission to museums or concerts rises with an increase in foreign tourists. Admissions to exhibitions and shows expose a positive association with both domestic and international tourists, while non-cultural activities remain statistically insignificant. The results provide empirical support for the existence of a strong relationship between tourism flows and cultural participation. The findings also imply that the demand for entertainment varies depending on the origin of the tourist.

Suggested Citation

  • Borowiecki, Karol Jan & Castiglione, Concetta, 2012. "Cultural participation and tourism flows: An empirical investigation of Italian provinces," Discussion Papers on Economics 21/2012, University of Southern Denmark, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:hhs:sdueko:2012_021

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    2. Katarína ?ulková & Mária Jano?ková & Adriana Csikósová, 2019. "Prediction of tourism in the sustainable development of Carpatian region," Proceedings of Business and Management Conferences 8612326, International Institute of Social and Economic Sciences.
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    4. Castiglione, Concetta & Infante, Davide, 2014. "The evolution of theatre attendance in Italy: patrons and companies," MPRA Paper 63301, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 07 Mar 2015.
    5. Douglas S. Noonan & Ilde Rizzo, 2017. "Economics of cultural tourism: issues and perspectives," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer;The Association for Cultural Economics International, vol. 41(2), pages 95-107, May.
    6. Borowiecki, Karol Jan & Pedersen, Maja U. & Mitchell, Sara Beth, 2023. "Using big data to measure cultural tourism in Europe with unprecedented precision," Discussion Papers on Economics 5/2023, University of Southern Denmark, Department of Economics.
    7. Francesca Petrei & Lorenzo Cavallo & Maria Teresa Santoro, 2020. "Cultural tourism: an integrated analysis based on official data," Quality & Quantity: International Journal of Methodology, Springer, vol. 54(5), pages 1705-1724, December.
    8. Cellini, Roberto & Cuccia, Tiziana, 2014. "The Tourism Industry in Italy during the Great Recession (2008-12): What Data Show and Suggest," MPRA Paper 62473, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised Feb 2015.
    9. Constantin MANEA & Gheorghe SAVOIU & Ion IORGA SIMAN & Marian TAICU, 2014. "Inter-, Trans - And Multidisciplinarity,And Some Ideas Or Remarks On Cultural Tourism," THE YEARBOOK OF THE "GH. ZANE" INSTITUTE OF ECONOMIC RESEARCHES, Gheorghe Zane Institute for Economic and Social Research ( from THE ROMANIAN ACADEMY, JASSY BRANCH), vol. 23(2), pages 133-142.
    10. Marta Zieba, 2017. "Cultural participation of tourists – Evidence from travel habits of Austrian residents," Tourism Economics, , vol. 23(2), pages 295-315, March.
    11. Calogero Guccio & Domenico Lisi & Anna Mignosa & Ilde Rizzo, 2018. "Does cultural heritage monetary value have an impact on visits? An assessment using official Italian data," Tourism Economics, , vol. 24(3), pages 297-318, May.
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    13. Gianluca Cafiso & Roberto Cellini & Tiziana Cuccia, 2015. "Do Economic Crises Lead Tourists to Closer Destinations? An Analysis of Italy's Regional Data," CESifo Working Paper Series 5250, CESifo.
    14. Martin Falk & Eva Hagsten, 2017. "Measuring the impact of the European Capital of Culture programme on overnight stays: evidence for the last two decades," European Planning Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 25(12), pages 2175-2191, December.
    15. Aldo Seffrin & Claudio A. B. Lira & Rodrigo L. Vancini & Douglas A. T. Santos & Cathia Moser & Elias Villiger & Thomas Rosemann & Beat Knechtle & Lee Hill & Marilia S. Andrade, 2021. "Italians Are the Fastest 3000 m Open-Water Master Swimmers in the World," IJERPH, MDPI, vol. 18(14), pages 1-9, July.
    16. Zhen Su & Joshua R. Aaron & William C. McDowell & Dan Dan Lu, 2019. "Sustainable Synergies between the Cultural and Tourism Industries: An Efficiency Evaluation Perspective," Sustainability, MDPI, vol. 11(23), pages 1-20, November.
    17. Roberto Cellini & Tiziana Cuccia & Domenico Lisi, 2020. "Spatial dependence in museum services: an analysis of the Italian case," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer;The Association for Cultural Economics International, vol. 44(4), pages 535-562, December.
    18. Ewa Zaraś-Januszkiewicz & Jakub Botwina & Barbara Żarska & Tatiana Swoczyna & Tomasz Krupa, 2020. "Fortresses as Specific Areas of Urban Greenery Defining the Uniqueness of the Urban Cultural Landscape: Warsaw Fortress—A Case Study," Sustainability, MDPI, vol. 12(3), pages 1-30, February.
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    More about this item


    Cultural tourists; cultural participation; tourism flows; Italian provinces;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • L83 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - Sports; Gambling; Restaurants; Recreation; Tourism
    • Z11 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Economics of the Arts and Literature

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:


    This item is featured on the following reading lists, Wikipedia, or ReplicationWiki pages:
    1. Du lịch văn hóa in Wikipedia Vietnamese
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