Table of Contents

A Handbook of Cultural Economics, Second Edition

A Handbook of Cultural Economics, Second Edition

Elgar original reference

Edited by Ruth Towse

The second edition of this widely acclaimed and extensively cited collection of original contributions by specialist authors reflects changes in the field of cultural economics over the last eight years. Thoroughly revised chapters alongside new topics and contributors bring the Handbook up to date, taking into account new research, literature and the impact of new technologies in the creative industries.

Chapter 27: Digitalization

Anders Henten and Reza Tadayoni

Subjects: economics and finance, cultural economics, intellectual property, public sector economics


Anders Henten and Reza Tadayoni The aim of this chapter is to describe the digitalization of the cultural industries from a technology perspective by providing an overview of the processes of digitalization and the use of digital technologies in those industries. The technology focus, however, does not imply any technology determinism. We do not intend to discuss any basic cause-and-effect issues. But it can easily be established as a fact that new technological possibilities will be used by industries and society at large if they fit the workings of these entities. And digital technologies have certainly ‘fitted the workings’ of large segments of the cultural industries and have had, and continue to have, huge implications for the developments of these industries. Sometimes changes come fast and in other cases implications of technology change and use take much longer than expected. The digitalization of information and communication technologies (ICTs) has been used in the processes of transformation of almost all industries and areas of life. ICTs are pervasive technologies. There is, however, a special affinity between ICTs and large segments of the cultural industries. The obvious reason is that the cultural industries are concerned with communications and that ICTs are communication technologies. There are clearly differences between different parts of the cultural industries. The art of painting is not much affected, apart from the advertisement of exhibitions and the selling of paintings, although admittedly digital technologies are increasingly used in creating works of art. The same applies to the theatre. However,...

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