A Handbook of Cultural Economics, Second Edition
Show Less

A Handbook of Cultural Economics, Second Edition

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.
Buy Book in Print
Show Summary Details
You do not have access to this content

Chapter 53: Publishing

Christian Hjorth-Andersen


Christian Hjorth-Andersen The publishing business has the distinction of providing the first known example of the average cost curve, showing the dependence of average total costs on volume. These cost curves were first presented by the German publisher Gottfried Christoph Härtel in about 1800, antedating other authors by almost a century. They were even put to practical use in negotiations with authors and composers including Ludwig van Beethoven; see the amusing account by Scherer (2001). However, this glorious past has not turned into a present of equal distinction. The knowledge about publishing is very scattered and comes almost entirely from outside the academic world, with Caves (2000) as an exception. The material relating to publishing is enormous, including official reports from various countries, memoirs, biographies and a large amount of anecdotal evidence, but solid knowledge based on research published in academic journals is scarce. Good data on the publishing industry are not very easy to come by as many publishing companies have other businesses besides publishing books, for example publication of magazines, and they publish their accounts for the company rather than for the book division. And data on the economics of the individual book are unavailable on a systematic basis. The basic functions of a publishing company consist of three parts: acquisition of manuscripts, editing and layout, and sales. The actual printing of the books may very well be outsourced, and so a publishing company need not be a very large company in the sense of employing many...

You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.

Elgaronline requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals. Please login through your library system or with your personal username and password on the homepage.

Non-subscribers can freely search the site, view abstracts/ extracts and download selected front matter and introductory chapters for personal use.

Your library may not have purchased all subject areas. If you are authenticated and think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

Further information

or login to access all content.