Journal of Cultural Economics

, Volume 32, Issue 4, pp 243–259 | Cite as

Why has cultural economics ignored copyright?

  • Ruth Towse
Original Article


My stance is that copyright policy should be viewed as part of cultural policy; cultural economists have had a great deal to say about subsidy and cultural policy but very little about copyright, though cultural economics is well placed to analyse copyright as an incentive to creativity in the creative industries because of its understanding of cultural policy and of artists’ labour markets. The article contrasts subsidy and copyright as policy tools and briefly discusses two current policy problems in relation to copyright—regulating copyright collection societies and the so-called ‘copyright levy’—arguing that these are the sort of issues cultural economists could (and should) be dealing with.


Cultural economics Copyright Cultural policy 

JEL classification

Z11 K11 O34 O38 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC. 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Economics of Creative Industries, Erasmus University RotterdamRotterdamThe Netherlands
  2. 2.CIPPM, The Business SchoolBournemouth UniversityPooleUK

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