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Changes in Cultural Consumption: Ethnographic Collections in Wikipedia

Author

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  • Trilce Navarrete

    () (Department of Business and Economics, University of Southern Denmark)

  • Karol Jan Borowiecki

    () (Department of Economics, Trinity College Dublin)

Abstract

Visits to museums have been studied as hedonic and utilitarian forms of cultural consumption, though limited attention has been given to the access of museum collections online. We perform a unique historic analysis of the visibility of collections in a museum of ethnographic collections and compare 100 years of onsite visits to 5 years online visits. We find two main results: first, access to collections increased substantially online. From a selection of objects available both onsite and online, access grew from an average of 156,000 onsite visitors per year to over 1.5 million views online per year. Onsite, 15.5 million people visited the museum in a spam of a century while online, 7.9 million people viewed collections in only the last 5 years. Second, we find a difference in consumer preference for type of object, favouring 3D onsite and 2D online (photographs of objects, particularly when showing them being used). Results support understanding of online heritage consumption and emerging dynamics, particularly outside of an institutional environment, such as Wikipedia.

Suggested Citation

  • Trilce Navarrete & Karol Jan Borowiecki, 2016. "Changes in Cultural Consumption: Ethnographic Collections in Wikipedia," Trinity Economics Papers tep1716, Trinity College Dublin, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:tcd:tcduee:tep1716
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. repec:taf:ecinnt:v:26:y:2017:i:3:p:227-246 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Karol J. Borowiecki & Trilce Navarrete, 2017. "Digitization of heritage collections as indicator of innovation," Economics of Innovation and New Technology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 26(3), pages 227-246, April.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Heritage consumption; Museums; Digital heritage; Access; Exhibition history; Wikipedia;

    JEL classification:

    • L31 - Industrial Organization - - Nonprofit Organizations and Public Enterprise - - - Nonprofit Institutions; NGOs; Social Entrepreneurship
    • D12 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Empirical Analysis
    • O35 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Social Innovation
    • N30 - Economic History - - Labor and Consumers, Demography, Education, Health, Welfare, Income, Wealth, Religion, and Philanthropy - - - General, International, or Comparative
    • Z11 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Economics of the Arts and Literature

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