Manuela Veronelli

Fundraising, Culture and Sponsorships. The Case of Italy

  • Abstract

Informations and abstract

Keywords: Fundraising; Donations; Cultural Economics; Public Policies.

In order to determine how fundraising is carried out in Italy, it is important to understand the cultural elements that are critical in enhancing an adequate philanthropic support with cultural organizations (museums, heritage sites, and so on). The aim of this paper is to examine the cultural sponsorship theme, outlining the present legal framework operating in Italy. First, we look at the rules on sponsorship from the point of view of civil law, considering its legal classification in the Italian legal system. Secondly, there is the need to analyze the procedure, in terms of administrative procedures, of the selection of the sponsor, as set forth in the procurement code. Third, we examine the differences in terms of taxation, between the institution receiving the contributions and the sponsorship of charitable donations recently introduced by the so-called Art Bonus. In this framework, we review two relevant cases emphasizing the main issues raised during those events: the restoration both of the Coliseum, sponsored by the multinational company Tod's Spa, and of the archaeological excavations of Herculaneum, carried out by the British Institute. The first is the most important and discussed case of cultural sponsorship in Italy, with the involvement of a great Italian trademark, the Tod's Spa. This also gave rise to an extensive litigation before the Administrative Court, the Council of State and the Competition Authority, triggered by consumer groups for the protection of cultural property, allegedly as property was damaged by the restorations commissioned by the entrepreneur Diego Della Valle, CEO of Tod's. Herculaneum, a case less known to a large public but still relevant, regards the financing of the excavations of the famous archaeological tourist site. It highlights the legal nature of the sponsorship agreement and the differences in terms of administrative procedures with respect to the other case previously examined: the Colosseum's one. The main conclusion is that the sponsorship contract is an appropriate model of partnership between businesses and public administration, aimed at increasing the protection and promotion of cultural heritage of our country. Hence, there is the need to introduce, at legislative level, a regime of greater favor to implement the restoration, and related activities by public companies.

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