Museum Funding Trends – USA
„Even well-endowed institutions are always in need of financial assistance. Museums have been hard hit by cutbacks in government spending. The budget of the NEA, the largest source of government funds, was slashed by 40 percent in fiscal 1996. Private philanthropy is also down. To make up for this loss, museums have sought new ways of raising money. „With less government money around, we all have to be more entrepreneurial and figure out ways to stretch our advertising dollars. We are slowly learning lessons others have known for years,“ David A. Ross, director of New York City’s Whitney Museum of American Art, told the New York Times.
Museums have entered into alliances with hotels, airlines, phone card companies, and credit card operations. Corporations, which once considered underwriting museum activities as primarily a gesture of goodwill, are increasingly finding their connections with museums an effective form of advertising. Also, branches of museum gift shops have opened up in many malls across the United States, with a portion of the proceeds going to the museums. […]„