In the United Kingdom the last two decades have seen a number of changes in government policy towards the arts and culture. Most notably, consecutive governments and public authorities involved in cultural policy have attempted to introduce an enterprise culture to the arts and cultural organisations while at the same time ensuring that the level of public funding for them has been constrained. Those museums and art galleries (henceforth called ‘museums’) which are publicly-financed have traditionally been less exposed to market principles than the performing arts sector which has always had to rely more heavily on earned income. However, since the mid-1980s, and more particularly in recent years, policies have been implemented to encourage museums to develop managerial skills in the areas of marketing and income generation.
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