Course Description

460.684 - Museums, Finance, and the Economy

This course examines how changes in the economy can affect museum income, expenditures, fundraising, endowments and attendance. It explores how various museum practices can mitigate the effects of a weak economy and capitalize on a strong economy. Through case studies of large and small museums, students examine information sources that managers use to identify changes in the local, regional, and national economy, which might affect their institutions. Students gain familiarity with economic and museum financial information by adopting two museums and tracking how changes in their finances and attendance relate to shifts in the economy. This course is critical for all students interested in the "behind-the-scenes" of museum management, including those with little or no background in finance or economics.