Opening Keynote

Bruce Seaman
Assoc Prof Bruce Seaman

The President Elect of ACEI, Professor Alan Collins is pleased to announce the opening keynote address will be given by Associate Professor Bruce Seaman from Georgia State University. The presentation will explore issues that connect the economics of the arts and culture with the economics of sport.

A reply to Bruce’s keynote will be given by Prof Robert Simmons from the University of Lancaster.

To download presentations from both Bruce and Rob click on the links below:

Bruce Seaman KEYNOTE

Rob Simmons Keynote response

Connecting the Economics of Art and Culture with the Economics of Sport

Bruce A. Seaman


Although the arts and sports are certainly distinguishable, they share many common features, and it is nearly impossible to deny that sports are a vital cultural force.  Both cultural and sports economists have at times wrestled with whether to incorporate lessons from the other sector into their research, but each field has been relatively successful in developing its own identity while largely ignoring the other.  Hence, it is a challenge to argue that such specialization, so common throughout academia, has led to significant missed opportunities.

This presentation begins by confirming that culture cannot be adequately studied without including sports, and that historically there have been close interrelationships between sport and music and other arts activities, including links of both to aesthetics.   More concretely, it is argued that there are both direct and indirect relationships between the sectors that can generate useful research agendas.  Direct relationships include four arenas in which arts and sports activities can be either partial substitutes or complements: (1) in active and passive participation, often linked to the study of time allocation among leisure activities (an area that has in fact been generating some important research); (2) as part of the agenda to identify more “intrinsic” economic impacts (more accurately just a different type of instrumental impact) from artistic and sporting endeavors (e.g. the Mozart vs. the Pele effect); (3) as part of the effort to better understand the competitive pressures and market realities facing what often appear to be localized monopoly arts and sports organizations, and (4) as part of the effort to better understand the optimal local cultural infrastructure, its components, the importance of cluster effects, critical mass effects, and the role of such infrastructure in generating a higher regional quality of life, and the ability to attract both a high quality workforce and shorter term tourist/mega event benefits.  Indirect relationships provide potential “demonstration” effects due to the two sectors exhibiting important similarities even if there are limited or no actual overlapping or jointly determined effects.  Such similarities include: (1) similar characteristics in their labor markets; (2) multiplicative production functions in  team settings; (3) exposure to exogenous technical change and media shocks that have generated some interesting similar dilemmas; and (4) the challenges related to playing and performing in venues requiring strategic decisions regarding static and dynamic price discrimination, including optimal seat allocations, developing an optimal mix of revenue from tickets and ancillary complementary products,  and  coping with ticket resale markets


While briefly highlighting the existing literature that either exhibits current cross-over research or identifies areas where such research might be fruitful, a number of “effects” are discussed going beyond the well-known Baumol Cost Disease: (2) the Linder Harried Leisure class effect; (3) the Gospel of Matthew effect; (4) the Boris Becker (or Steffi Graf) effect; (5) the Mozart vs. Pele effect; (6) the Rosentraub transformation; (7) the Usain Bolt effect; and the (8) Beware of what you wish for effect.