The Economics of Books

M.F.M. Canoy, J.C. van Ours, F. van der Ploeg

Research output: Working paperDiscussion paperOther research output

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Abstract

The tensions between books and book markets as expressions of culture and books as products in profit-making businesses are analysed and insights from the theory of industrial organisation are given.Governments intervene in the market for books through laws concerning prices of books, grants for authors and publishers, a lower value-added tax, public libraries and education in order to stimulate the diversity of books on offer, increase the density of retail outlets and to promote reading.An overview of the different ways by which countries differ in terms of market structures and government policies is given. Particular attention is paid to retail price maintenance.Due to differences between European countries it is not a good idea to harmonise European book policies.Our analysis suggests that the book market seems quite able to invent solutions to specific problems of the book trade and that, apart from promoting reading, there is little need for government intervention.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationTilburg
PublisherMacroeconomics
Number of pages57
Volume2005-13
Publication statusPublished - 2005

Publication series

NameCentER Discussion Paper
Volume2005-13

Fingerprint

Economics
Government policy
Government intervention
Retail
Public education
Public libraries
Retail prices
Industrial organization
Government
Profit
Market structure
Value added tax
European countries

Keywords

  • books
  • publishers
  • authors
  • diversity
  • monopolistic competition
  • retail price maintenance
  • subsidies
  • libraries
  • Internet

Cite this

Canoy, M. F. M., van Ours, J. C., & van der Ploeg, F. (2005). The Economics of Books. (CentER Discussion Paper; Vol. 2005-13). Tilburg: Macroeconomics.
Canoy, M.F.M. ; van Ours, J.C. ; van der Ploeg, F. / The Economics of Books. Tilburg : Macroeconomics, 2005. (CentER Discussion Paper).
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Canoy, MFM, van Ours, JC & van der Ploeg, F 2005 'The Economics of Books' CentER Discussion Paper, vol. 2005-13, Macroeconomics, Tilburg.

The Economics of Books. / Canoy, M.F.M.; van Ours, J.C.; van der Ploeg, F.

Tilburg : Macroeconomics, 2005. (CentER Discussion Paper; Vol. 2005-13).

Research output: Working paperDiscussion paperOther research output

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AB - The tensions between books and book markets as expressions of culture and books as products in profit-making businesses are analysed and insights from the theory of industrial organisation are given.Governments intervene in the market for books through laws concerning prices of books, grants for authors and publishers, a lower value-added tax, public libraries and education in order to stimulate the diversity of books on offer, increase the density of retail outlets and to promote reading.An overview of the different ways by which countries differ in terms of market structures and government policies is given. Particular attention is paid to retail price maintenance.Due to differences between European countries it is not a good idea to harmonise European book policies.Our analysis suggests that the book market seems quite able to invent solutions to specific problems of the book trade and that, apart from promoting reading, there is little need for government intervention.

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Canoy MFM, van Ours JC, van der Ploeg F. The Economics of Books. Tilburg: Macroeconomics. 2005. (CentER Discussion Paper).