Matthias W. PACHER
(Archäologischer Park Carnuntum / Kulturfabrik Hainburg, Austria)
Cultural tourism has become one of the most important sectors in the tourist industry throughout the world. Also in Lower Austria, increased demand has often led to a satiated leisure market quite independent of the wide range of cultural activities on offer. Potential customers are faced with an almost confusing range of choices. However, not only intensified competition between various providers, but also the tendency towards privatization in the public realm has forced cultural institutions to change. The lines defining the different branches of tourism are disappearing, and the enterprises’ range of activities are changing. Cultural institutions must therefore strive to make strategic plans for the future and to act – where possible – as tourism units. “Destination Management” is one of the keywords which has to be mentioned within this context.
Cooperation between two or more cultural partners can create quite new opportunities with increased customer benefits, which would not be possible for a lone effort. It should be clear that through the management of knowledge, the exchange of ideas and joint professional marketing (cross marketing) not only can savings be made but also a successful front can be presented to the public.
The “Niederösterreichische Kulturwirtschaft GmbH” (NÖKU) which is structured as a private sector institution in Lower Austria, joins a lot of enterprises that come together under this holding company to have a co-operative and coordinated management. The aim of NÖKU as a cultural holding company is to enable a successful joint effort to increase market share in the cultural tourism sector. A very frequented exhibition enterprise in Lower Austria, which is also subsidiary of NÖKU – the Archäologische Kulturpark Niederösterreich Betriebs GmbH – works already very successfully concerning their cooperative cultural management and cultural mediation. For this organisation the advantages and also risks of the synergy and cooperation of cultural institutions within the destination will be examined from both the producers’ and the customers’ points of view.
Keywords: Archaeology, cultural tourism, destination management, cultural mediation, marketing