Free discussion at the museum. Numbers are not opinions, at most they generate them

An article on the controversy over free museums published in recent days by TPI and signed by Carmen Pave says there are many incorrect or outdated numbers. Wrong numbers generate wrong opinions, and right numbers generate opinions that may be wrong.

admire fountain Via Botticelli or entering the Colosseum and “imagining a theatrical performance in the time of ancient Rome” are activities that have a cost, he writes. Carmen Mustache In an article published in the paper version of international mail (TPI), in connection with the debate about free admission to museums. However, it seems necessary to clarify the content of the article which contains many incorrect or outdated numbers. Meanwhile, not all UK National Museums Supported directly by Department of Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), as it is written in the article: This is true only for those on English soil (15 in all), while those in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are financed by the governments of the respective constituent countries. Museums are named Sponsored by DCMSthat is, those who receive direct resources from the Ministry of Culture, were visited by 47.6 million visitors in 2019 (not 47,647 as stated in the article: the figure on Statista indicated by TPI is expressed in the thousands).

The total revenue generated by British museums in 2019 was £897.5m and not £59m as Carmen Pavey reported (this figure refers to ticket revenue), it is at least impossible that UK museums in 2019 are doing 51m as it is Written in the article (a higher figure than the total working population of the country). In Italy, on the other hand, there are 4,976 museums (there were 4,976 in 2015): according to Latest resultspublished in 2022 and related to 2020, fewer museums are open to Istat, i.e. 4,265 (less than previous years likely due to covid lockdown).

As for the data on possible shortage that budget Ministry of Culture Italian if he so decides Make free access to all state museumsThe figure is correct: we note with pleasure that as regards considerations regarding the application of the British model in Italy, Carmen Pave and Windows on Art they have same sourcesperhaps the one used in the Article by Federico Giannininot cited by TPI despite the often identical lexicon, which addressed the issue in 2019. And Baffi clearly not only has the same sources as Windows on Art, but also The translators themselves (who used the same phrases), where he conveys in the box the news of Germany that has guaranteed a billion euros for the cultural institutes of the energy crisis, and the news that, at the date of publication of the article, only our headline in Italy was published on the web.

Again, the National Museum System It was not “born” in 2014 (Pavi may confuse the National Museum system with independent institutes, defined in Prime Minister’s Decision No. 171 of August 29, 2014), but was formally identified for the first time by Ministerial Resolution of December 29, 2014, but only enacted In 2018, the ministerial decision issued on February 21, which includes “the adoption of unified minimum levels of quality for museums and cultural places belonging to the public, and the activation of the national museums system.”

Finally, regarding the data on museum workers, the article still mentions the statistics without mentioning the reference year: the latest Istat surveys, again those of 2020, record 47,965 employees of Italian museums before. Close and 41835 later.

Image: National Gallery, London

Free discussion at the museum.  Numbers are not opinions, at most they generate them
Free discussion at the museum. Numbers are not opinions, at most they generate them

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