Saturday, November 26, 2005

Baumol's symphony orchestra

Prof. DeLong channels Marginal Revolution on the topic of European labor and musical protectionism. Here's my comment:

Let's remember that the symphony orchestra was the original case study for Baumol's cost disease: "Performing Arts: The Economic Dilemma" (1966).

A French musician can not be more productive than a Bulgarian one. His higher wage is (was) only justified by his (no longer) exclusive access to customers who are more productive than the average Bulgarian.

Via:
Heilbrun, J., "Baumol's cost disease", Chapter 11 in: Towse, R. (ed), (2003), "A handbook of cultural economics".
Read it:
https://ep.eur.nl/handle/1765/782