Category Archives: Rethinking Business

Pier Luigi Sacco is the new Special Adviser to the European Commission in the field of cultural heritage

(from the DECLARATION ON THE HONOUR OF NO CONFLICT OF INTEREST BETWEEN THE DUTIES OF SPECIAL ADVISER TO THE COMMISSION AND OTHER ACTIVITIES)

The European Commission intends to offer Mr Pierluigi Sacco a contract as Special Adviser. Continue reading Pier Luigi Sacco is the new Special Adviser to the European Commission in the field of cultural heritage

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A concept timeline of culture evolution: from Culture to Culture 3.0

Culture 1.0: classical patronage
• Technological conditions for cheap reproducibility and circulation not existing yet: no structured cultural markets;
• Limited audience, coinciding with the patron’s acquaintances;
• Patronage choices determined by the patron’s tastes and interests, mainly for spiritual cultivation and social promotion;
• Culture does not generate value added, but only absorbs value produced elsewhere in the economy.

Culture 1.1: strategic patronage
• The target expands strategically beyond the patron’s acquaintances to pursue more ambitious consensus policies (civil or religious audiences);
• Patronage choices determined by ideological objectives, in a potentially conflicting dialectics with artists;
• Culture is economically non‐productive, but can generate a huge political and social payoff, and even economic insofar as it increases the patron’s image and bargaining power in economic trade or banking relationships.

Culture 1.2: public patronage
• Culture becomes a more and more universal human right as a basic component of human development;
• The State chooses what deserves to be patronized and what not, thereby fixing the dyadic categories of high‐(brow) vs. low‐(brow) culture;
• Audience significantly expands, with outside the market context;
• Culture absorbs relatively huge resources, and implies a redistribution from the citizens who don’t attend to those who attend;
• Access to high‐brow culture becomes a sign of bourgeois distinction.

The 1.0‐2.0 transition
• Modern cultural markets are created by the concurrent emergence of a wave of technological innovation at the edge between XIX and XX century: modern printing, radio, music recording, photography, cinema;
• The fact that for more than one century through the industrial revolution culture is not industrialized, however, creates a permanent frame of mind in Europe according to which culture is un‐economical and needs to be subsidized anyway;
• The high‐brow stigma of patronage makes commercialization of culture problematic to many cultural players and to part of the audiences.

culture3-0-evolution-scheme-by-pier-luigi-sacco
Culture 3.0 evolution scheme by Pier Luigi Sacco

Culture 2.0: CCIs
• Builds and reaches very large audiences;
• Is based on the virtually unlimited reproducibility of creative contents once the matrix has been produced;
• Generates significant turnover and profits;
• Is a distinct sector of the economy, and a part of the entertainment meta‐sector;
• Generates leisure experiences and occupies (part of) free time of people;
• Needs intellectual protection (copyright);
• May also increasingly extend the creative element to functional domains (CIs)

The 2.0‐3.0 transition
• We are now witnessing a new regime transition that is driven by two concurrent streams of innovation: digital content production + digital connectivity;
• Standard digital suites provide people with semiprofessional packages that are cheap and easy to learn; with a modest investment they can be upgraded at the professional level;
• The same packages less than 2 decades ago would have been expensive, would have required bulky hardware and would have been difficult to use;
• Contents can be distributed almost without mediators to highly segmented and profiled audiences by means of increasingly specialized social media.

Culture 3.0: Communities of practice and open platforms
• Blurred distinction between producers and users of content: cultural access and production of new contents are two phases of the same process;
• Culture can be massively produced and distributed also outside market channels;
• Economic and social value is produced not only through priced content, but also through generic participation;
Culture becomes increasingly a precondition of all kinds of economic value generation processes (‘culturalization’ of the economy);
• Culture is no longer an aspect of free time use but is entrenched in the fabric of daily life.

The Culture 3.0 paradigm
• Culture 1.0 (Patronage): Highbrow vs. lowbrow, culture as spiritual cultivation, no industrial organization;
• Culture 2.0 (CCIs): copyright, culture as entertainment, market organization;
• Culture 3.0 (open communities of practice): blurred distinction producers/users, culture as collective sense-making, networks organization.

Culture 3.0 is itself a transitional model. Like in all transitions, we tend to focus mainly on what is more familiar, i.e., on the 2.x remnants of the 3.0 scenario. But the momentum goes elsewhere:
•Imitating the business leaders of today in creative industry is very myopic. We have a major revolution ahead, and things will change radically;
•The real disruptive innovation lies in community participation and in the social organization models that unleash the potential of collective co-creation;
•If you want to build a long-term culture-led development model, go for them and prioritize participation. This is the crucial asset that makes the difference, not technology in itself.

Challenges ahead: Culture 3.1
•The persisting logic of Culture 2.x makes people think that an economy of collective content making can still be organized into XIX-XX century profit maximizing companies;
•It will become quickly clear that a socially unfair economic model generating growing inequality is simply not sustainable, as the Silicon Valley Dilemma is beginning to demonstrate;
•This could make the currently dominating Big 4 business models quickly obsolete
•Collective content making requires true inclusive participation and massive capability building;
•Therefore if we want to understand the cultural industries of the future we have to focus upon processes of culture-led development and public cultural participation.

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Rawlsian altruism with perfect discrimination leads to social efficiency

Recent studies draw attention on the highly specialized capacity of human beings in recognizing altruists versus cheaters in social interactions. These results hint at the existence of specialized abilities that support discriminating behavior in strategic interactions. In this paper, we explore the implications of discriminating behavior in the study of the indirect evolutionary selection of selfish versus altruistic motivations in the context of generic 2×2 base games, and in particular for coordination and cooperation scenarios. Continue reading Rawlsian altruism with perfect discrimination leads to social efficiency

Analyzing the semantics of point spaces through the topological weighted centroid and other mathematical quantities: the hidden geometry of the global economic order

For many spatial processes, there is a natural need to find out the point of origin on the basis of the available scatter of observations; think, for instance, of finding out the home base of a criminal given the actual distribution of crime scenes, or the outbreak source of an epidemics. In this article, we build on the topological weighted centroid (TWC) methodology that has been applied in previous research to the reconstruction of space syntax problems, for example, of problems where all relevant entities are of spatial nature so that the relationships between them are inherently spatial and need to be properly reconstructed. Continue reading Analyzing the semantics of point spaces through the topological weighted centroid and other mathematical quantities: the hidden geometry of the global economic order

Smart endogenous growth: cultural capital and the creative use of skills

Purpose – Despite the growing literature aimed at explaining how cultural and artistic production feeds economic growth, the causal relationships and interplays are not investigated in depth. In the attempt of filling this gap, the purpose of this paper is to examine arts, culture, and education within the framework of the New Growth Theory. Continue reading Smart endogenous growth: cultural capital and the creative use of skills

A Conceptual Regulatory Framework for the Design and Evaluation of Complex, Participative Cultural Planning Strategies

The current hype about culture-led local development models is causing an increasing interest in cultural policies in the broader context of urban policy. This is not necessarily a transitory situation bound to fade once the hype is over. Under certain conditions, there is room to believe that culture may indeed become a main development driver of urban systems. Continue reading A Conceptual Regulatory Framework for the Design and Evaluation of Complex, Participative Cultural Planning Strategies

Wealth-sensitive positional competition as a source of dynamic complexity in OLG models

This paper examines the interactions between economic activity and consumption externalities in an overlapping generations model. Existence of multiple steady states
is studied from a global point of view, and possible mechanisms producing cycles and chaotic behavior are analyzed. Wealth-sensitive positionality is found to be able to generate persistent endogenous fluctuations, whereas wealth-neutral positionality doesn’t. Continue reading Wealth-sensitive positional competition as a source of dynamic complexity in OLG models

Culture 3.0: A new perspective for the EU 2014-2020 structural funds programming

In spite of the multiplication of successful examples of culture-led local and regional development across Europe and elsewhere (e.g. Sacco et al., 2008, 2009), there is a widespread perception that the role and potential of culture in the overall European long-term competitiveness strategy is still seriously underrecognized (CSES, 2010). This reflects in the difficulty to bring cultural policy issues at the top ranks of the broader policy agenda, and consequently explains why the share of structural funds devoted to culture badly fails to match the share of cultural and creative sectors in total EU value added. Continue reading Culture 3.0: A new perspective for the EU 2014-2020 structural funds programming

Evolutionary Selection of Socially Sensitive Preferences in Random Matching Environments

In this paper we study the evolutionary selection of socially sensitive preferences in the context of reference interaction settings such as coordination failure and cooperation. We refer to a specific class of socially sensitive preferences in which players weigh additively their own material payoff against the opponent with either a positive or negative coefficient (lambda-players). Continue reading Evolutionary Selection of Socially Sensitive Preferences in Random Matching Environments

Social preferences and private provision of public goods: A ‘double critical mass’ model

We set up an evolutionary game-theoretic model aimed at addressing the issue of local public good provision via direct commitment of voluntary forces (private donors and
nonprofit providers) only. Continue reading Social preferences and private provision of public goods: A ‘double critical mass’ model