Understanding relationship fading in cultural sponsorships

Rami Olkkonen (Turku School of Economics and Business Administration, Turku, Finland)
Pekka Tuominen (Department of Management Studies, University of Tampere, Tampere, Finland)

Corporate Communications: An International Journal

ISSN: 1356-3289

Publication date: 1 January 2006



To describe, analyse, and understand relationship fading between a business sponsor and a sponsored museum in the context of cultural sponsorships.


The empirical study uses a longitudinal and a dyadic approach to analyse the temporal development of a three‐year cultural‐sponsorship relationship.


This study tackles the phenomenon of relationship fading in cultural sponsorships. The triggers of relationship fading are first elaborated into structural and situational triggers. These triggers are further categorised into structural predisposing triggers, situational precipitating triggers, situational attenuating, and structural attenuating triggers.

Research limitations/implications

Most of the triggers of relationship fading are passive and indirect. Consequently, the triggers of fading affect the development of the relationship by gradually reducing the sponsor's motivations to invest and develop the cultural‐sponsorship relationship.

Practical implications

Successful management of cultural sponsorship requires the interacting actors to be aware of the structural and situational triggers of fading that can lead to the fading and potential ultimate ending of such a relationship. Using culture‐oriented marketing professionals with good communication skills between the business and the arts community is vital in managing cultural sponsorships and in avoiding fading in cultural‐sponsorship relationships.


A central feature of the fresh theoretical framework on relationship fading is the link between relatively permanent structures and the situational processes. A dyadic and longitudinal approach is adopted to reveal the past, present, and future dynamics of fading in the cultural‐sponsorship relationship.



Olkkonen, R. and Tuominen, P. (2006), "Understanding relationship fading in cultural sponsorships", Corporate Communications: An International Journal, Vol. 11 No. 1, pp. 64-77. https://doi.org/10.1108/13563280610643561

Download as .RIS



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2006, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

To read the full version of this content please select one of the options below

You may be able to access this content by logging in via Shibboleth, Open Athens or with your Emerald account.
To rent this content from Deepdyve, please click the button.
If you think you should have access to this content, click the button to contact our support team.