Golf's Social Conscience and impact on Economics
The game of golf in America has evolved into many things. Traditionally a game for the elite, country club set, the American landscape was dotted with approximately 6,600 golf courses in 1960, of which about half were private. In 2016, according to the National Golf Foundation, there were approximately 15,000 courses, about 25% of which were private clubs. Though the relative portion of private golf is declining, there are still a similar number of private clubs as existed in 1960 with a considerably greater # of public-access facilities (3,200 vs. 11,000).
To many, golf is still perceived as an elitist pursuit. The current president has stated that he believes golf should be “aspirational”. In order for the game to grow and thrive its appeal needs to broaden.