Edited by Jon Sundbo and Flemming Sørensen
Chapter 6: The experience market
Since the ending of World War II, the social significance of the experience market in Europe has constantly grown. The term experience market here denotes the meeting of experience demand and experience supply. Experience demand as well as experience supply are subject to a particular rationality – this is the starting point of analysing the experience market in the following sections. By demanding experiences one is acting in quite another field than consuming material goods. Experience suppliers have to account for the particular rationality of experience demand. This holds, with some modifications, also for cultural policy administrating public events and opportunities. On the experience market, experience offers are exchanged for money and/or attention. In the following, the concepts of experience offers and experience supply will comprise all products, the use of which is predominantly defined in aesthetical terms (nice, exciting, comfortable, stylish, interesting and so on). The concepts of experience demand or inwardly oriented consumption refer to the use of experience offers. Admittedly, this is merely a particular case of experience-oriented action, but the increased significance of this particular case requires a sociological analysis. Aesthetic episodes, whether every-day or not, unfold more and more in the framework of market relations.
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