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Culture-led City Brands as Economic Engines: Theory and Empirics

Beatriz Plaza (), Pilar Gonzalez-Casimiro (), Paz Moral-Zuazo () and Courtney Waldron
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Pilar Gonzalez-Casimiro: University of the Basque Country UPV/EHU, Spain
Paz Moral-Zuazo: University of the Basque Country UPV/EHU, Spain

No AWP-05-2013, ACEI Working Paper Series from Association for Cultural Economics International

Abstract: Cultural re-imaging through iconic art museums aims to create symbolic capital for a place in the form of creative images, reputation, and associations with innovation. While literature has long identified architectural uniqueness as a potential driver of brand competitiveness, we argue diffusion of that image is equally important. This work draws upon economic concepts from other cultural industries (such as film, music, and art) to develop a framework for understanding how cultural brands are built: how reproducible images of singular architecture accumulate in the media to strengthen a brand. We then test an art brand´s impact on visitors. This work aims to offer evidence that the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao brand generates tourism to the city of Bilbao. By understanding how iconic cultural structures create symbolic capital, policy makers may better tailor similar culture-led branding strategies to other places.

Keywords: Iconic Art Museums; Image Markets; Urban Economics; Branding Effectiveness (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: Z1 R1 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 18 pages
Date: 2013-10, Revised 2013-10
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cul, nep-ipr, nep-pr~, nep-mkt, nep-tur and nep-ure
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