World Economics - Insight , Analysis and Data

World Economics - Insight , Analysis and Data
Pricing Cultural Heritage
Susana Mourato, Ece Ozdemiroglu, Tannis Hett & Giles Atkinson
World Economics, September 2004

A growing determinant of leisure travel decisions has been the demand for cultural destinations. This has presented complex challenges with regards to the correct management of major cultural resources. Management options can be assessed in terms of three criteria of performance: access, financial sustainability and environmental sustainability. This paper shows that a promising means of reconciling these desirable objectives is to harness the potential of economic pricing strategies (such as entry charges), where data on willingness to pay for visits are based on non-market valuation methods. A real-life illustration is provided by examining the case of the Machu Picchu Historic Sanctuary in Peru. It is shown that this approach can usefully inform expected changes in the entry fee level and structure not just of Machu Picchu but cultural destinations and resources more generally.
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