A new course offered by the College of Business at the University of Nevada, Reno allows students to experience an international learning opportunity without leaving the United States.
“Museums and Marketing” (Marketing 492), which will be offered during the 2023 summer mini session from May 22 to June 9, will be co-taught by Thomas Burnham, associate professor of marketing at the University of Nevada, Reno, and Andrea Lauria, professor of museology at the University of Rome Tor Vergata. The course combines the two professors’ expertise in marketing and museology, the study of museums and the history of their establishment and development, to create a unique course with an international perspective and multi-disciplinary approach.
“Considering my experience in museology and the strong economic and social impact that the hyper-museums have on the territories on which they are built, professor Burnham and I decided to associate our subjects and create a course on museums’ marketing,” Lauria said. “The topic of hyper-museums is extremely interesting and not only from the art historical perspective but also for its socio-economic impact on societies and territories.”
The course will explore the inner workings of museums, providing a unique perspective on the history of museums as institutions of power, how museums work as an example of brand marketing and the shifting business models of museums today. Museums throughout the northern Nevada and California region will participate in the course through field trips and guest lectures from experts in the field. Participating museums include the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (MOMA), the California Academy of Sciences Museum, the National Automobile Museum, the Nevada Museum of Art and the Discovery Museum.
The partnership between University of Rome Tor Vergata and the College of Business began in 2019. In addition to the course being taught this summer, Burnham also hosted two of Lauria’s graduate students from Rome and helped them work on their theses in September 2022. Future plans for collaboration between the two universities include an official exchange program.
“Part of the future that they envision is bringing our students there,” Burnham said. “We want more student exchanges to take our students to Rome.”
Interested students can register online for the course until May 23. The course is open to all undergraduate students pursuing a business major or minor.