School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management

What inspires us - our top 25 papers

We feel these papers say something important about the development of the field over the past twenty five years. 

Published on 11 Oct 2021
Celebrating 25 years of the UK Centre for Events Management

To celebrate 25 years of event management education and research at Leeds Beckett University, we have fully funded postgraduate bursaries for 25 of our alumni, highlighted the successes of 25 of our high achieving graduates, invested in an impact PhD bursary (working in collaboration with MPI) and selected 25 articles that we feel say something important about the development of the field over the last quarter of a century. 

Selecting the 25 contributions was entirely subjective. The long list emerged from UK Centre for Event Management staff meetings, discussions with our students, invitations to alumni and conversations with colleagues working in various parts of the world. We then squabbled, traded, negotiated and finally agreed on the 25 papers listed below. We then asked several members of our international network - whose views we respect enormously - to pass comment.

We suspect that many, perhaps even most, people reading our list would have also included other works. Long may that spirit of debate and criticality flourish as we share a common interest in researching and teaching event management.

Editorial team:

Dr James Musgrave. Head of UK Centre for Events Management, School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management

Professor Rhodri Thomas, Dean of the School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management

Professor Emma Wood, Professor of Events and Experiential Marketing, School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management

Caution: The editors have shortened some of the endorsements that appear below.  We hope we have not misrepresented anyone by doing so.

Our top 25 papers

ADDIS, M., MINIERO, G., & SOSCIA, I. (2018). FACING CONTRADICTORY EMOTIONS IN EVENT MARKETING: LEVERAGING ON SURPRISE. JOURNAL OF CONSUMER MARKETING, 35(2): 183-193

This research captures the positive influence of surprise on limiting negative consequences of the emotion of embarrassment that could be caused by some specific event design. This is very interesting and inspiring to my future research. Dr Yanning Li, School of Hospitality and Tourism Management, University of Surrey, UK, and alumna of the UK Centre for Events Management

I found the exploration of negative emotions in event marketing a unique study and one that our students relate to. The debates outlined here bring to life personal experiences of our students and enable them to apply reflective learning to theoretical positions. Dr James Musgrave, School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Leeds Beckett University, UK

BOO, S., & PARK, E. (2013). AN EXAMINATION OF GREEN INTENTION: THE EFFECT OF ENVIRONMENTAL KNOWLEDGE AND EDUCATIONAL EXPERIENCES ON MEETING PLANNERS’ IMPLEMENTATION OF GREEN MEETING PRACTICES. JOURNAL OF SUSTAINABLE TOURISM, 21(8), 1129-1147

Although Covid-19 has shown us that we can still meet virtually, it seems likely that everyone will want to return to face-to-face meetings as soon as possible. So, implementing green meeting practices will once again be key to managing the impacts of conferences on climate change. This paper gives us theoretical and practical implications to help us do that. It has certainly influenced my work on events and sustainability. Dr Judith Mair, Business School, The University of Queensland, Australia

This article addresses one of the most important questions that is asked around the world - how do we get people to implement green practices?  I use this article in graduate event courses to provide foundation discussion on how we can educate event and meeting planners to reduce negative environmental impacts.  I feel research like this is not only necessary for the industry but impactful. Dr Kelly Semrad, Rosen College of Hospitality Management, University of Central Florida, USA

CADE, N., EVERETT, S., & DUIGNAN, M. (2021). LEVERAGING DIGITAL AND PHYSICAL SPACES TO ‘DE-RISK’ AND ACCESS RIO'S FAVELA COMMUNITIES. TOURISM GEOGRAPHIES, 23 (1-2): 249-274

I found this article very valuable as it highlights not only the merits of qualitative research … (and) the importance of carefully building trust and mutual understanding between the researcher and local stakeholders in challenging/high-risk settings. Recommended reading for my research students. Dr Karin Weber, School of Hospitality and Tourism Management, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University 

This article draws attention to some of the challenges that researchers face when conducting investigations that include hard to reach populations. These populations are generally vulnerable, sensitive, marginalized, or socially excluded groups of people…. Yet, there is scant research that prescribes a methodology that could help to overcome such challenges. Dr Kelly Semrad, Rosen College of Hospitality Management, University of Central Florida, USA

COLLINS, A., JONES, C., & MUNDAY, M. (2009). ASSESSING THE ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS OF MEGA SPORTING EVENTS: TWO OPTIONS? TOURISM MANAGEMENT, 30(6), 828-837

This paper considers two potential approaches for environmental impact assessment – the ecological footprint approach and the environmental input-output analysis… (it) provides a great overview of the strengths and weaknesses of these two approaches and makes the findings very accessible, even to those not very familiar with the technical aspects of these assessments. Dr Judith Mair, Business School, The University of Queensland, Australia 

Colllins et al. (2009) present a well-informed critical perspective of environmental impacts of mega-sport events. The debates in this paper enable those interested to explore further the continuing challenges that face the event industry and policy changes needed to ensure a sustainable future. Dr James Musgrave, School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Leeds Beckett University, UK

DASHPER, K., & BUCHMANN, A. (2020). MULTISPECIES EVENT EXPERIENCES: INTRODUCING MORE THAN HUMAN PERSPECTIVES TO EVENT STUDIES. JOURNAL OF POLICY RESEARCH IN TOURISM, LEISURE AND EVENTS, 12(3), 293-309

I am fascinated to see such a novel angle of investigating experiences and particularly event experience via a non-human but lively lens. The more-than-human perspective is definitely inspiring to me on how other species can shape human’s experience in events, and how human-other species interactions evolve in events in the post-Covid era. Dr Yanning Li, School of Hospitality and Tourism Management, University of Surrey, UK, and alumna of UK Centre for Events Management 

I was thoroughly intrigued by the concept idea that the success for some events depends upon a co-creation experience between humans and animals that is positive and memorable for all the species involved….  I think this research is a step in the right direction to appreciate the contact points between nature and people while being cognizant that all species involved should have a positive experience. Dr Kelly Semrad, Rosen College of Hospitality Management, University of Central Florida, USA

GETZ, D. (2012). EVENT STUDIES: DISCOURSES AND FUTURE DIRECTIONS. EVENT MANAGEMENT, 16(2), 171-187

I believe this study helped to shape the direction of event tourism research.  I use this article as a cornerstone in event graduate research classes…. (it)  helps to spur research ideas and topics for graduate students.  I have also used this study to help guide my own event research agenda. Dr Kelly Semrad, Rosen College of Hospitality Management, University of Central Florida, USA

Getz distinguishes between event tourism, event management and disciplinary studies highlighting how each considers event impacts in a particular and distinctive manner. The author makes a strong case for the need for the field to evolve into event studies if it is to survive as a field of study in its own right. Professor Emma Wood, School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Leeds Beckett University, UK

HALL, C. M. (1989). THE DEFINITION AND ANALYSIS OF HALLMARK TOURIST EVENTS. GEO JOURNAL, 19(3), 263-268

This article still gives food for thought 22 years after publication.  The event industry still finds it challenging to measure the impact of events, be they ‘hallmark’ or other, and it is still aspirational that social and environmental impacts on the local host community are considered, along with the economic impacts. Heather Lishman, Director, Association of British Professional Conference Organisers, UK

This paper is important because it preceded the wave of interest in events that followed.  Its radical edge should be an inspiration to all researchers with an interest in this area of work. Professor Rhodri Thomas, School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Leeds Beckett University, UK

HIGGINS-DESBIOLLES, F. (2016). SUSTAINING SPIRIT: A REVIEW AND ANALYSIS OF AN URBAN INDIGENOUS AUSTRALIAN CULTURAL FESTIVAL. JOURNAL OF SUSTAINABLE TOURISM, 24(8-9), 1280-1297

This paper shows how festivals that are of value to communities can become threatened by the actions of tourism and other authorities. Interesting, refreshing and accessible.  It should be compulsory reading for all tourism and event management students and practitioners. Professor Rhodri Thomas, School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Leeds Beckett University, UK 

Higgins-Desbiolles poses many important questions that are often overlooked, even by those supporting community events. She encourages readers to think through community events in their own contexts very effectively. Dr Davide Sterchele, School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Leeds Beckett University, UK

HORNE, J. (2007). THE FOUR ‘KNOWNS’ OF SPORTS MEGA‐EVENTS. LEISURE STUDIES, 26(1), PP.81-96

First as a student and now as an academic, there are certain authors that I bank on for critical social analysis. John Horne is one of these. This paper is an essential read on all my sport event modules. It is there as a reminder that we need to take sports events seriously from a social, cultural and political perspective. Dr Thomas Fletcher, School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Leeds Beckett University, UK

Horne critiques the contribution of sports mega-events on the host country… (and) challenges academics to question the seduction of mega-events, evidencing some that have proven to be detrimental to the local community and the wider host country. Dr Lucy Laville, School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Leeds Beckett University, UK

JONES, C., & LI, S. (2015). THE ECONOMIC IMPORTANCE OF MEETINGS AND CONFERENCES: A SATELLITE ACCOUNT APPROACH. ANNALS OF TOURISM RESEARCH, 52, 117-133

This paper really helps understand the importance of the ‘economic geography’ of MICE, and the proposed construct should positively influence Today’s public policy in this area, at a time when the industry is under the greatest turmoil ever experienced. Yann Tournesac, PhD Candidate, School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Leeds Beckett University, UK

The exploration of policy and measurement issues alongside the recognition of the scale of the sector underlines the economic and social significance to the UK economy. Its wide distribution and partnership with key associations makes this paper and its findings highly impactful. Dr James Musgrave, School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Leeds Beckett University, UK

KELLY, D. M., & FAIRLEY, S. (2018). WHAT ABOUT THE EVENT? HOW DO TOURISM LEVERAGING STRATEGIES AFFECT SMALL-SCALE EVENTS? TOURISM MANAGEMENT, 64, 335-345

This paper applies contingency theory to explore how small-scale events in one particular region were encouraged to engage in tourism leveraging through grant funding opportunities … Its recommendations are particularly valuable. Dr Julia Calver, School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Leeds Beckett University, UK

Public funding on events is examined and how the managers of ‘small-scale’ events can feel compromised by the need to seek funding in return for adopting a tourism agenda for what initially might not have been a tourism focused event. Analytical yet of great practical value.  Dr Lucy Laville, School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Leeds Beckett University, UK

LAMOND, I. R., & AGAR, L. (2019). BEYOND THE FRAME: USE OF AUGMENTED SCREENINGS AS A VISUAL METHODOLOGY IN CRITICAL EVENT STUDIES. EVENT MANAGEMENT, 23(2), 269-278

This article also presents a novel methodology sitting in a special event context—events of dissent. I wish there were more articles like this that discuss new perspectives for exploring and understanding events. Dr Yanning Li, School of Hospitality and Tourism Management, University of Surrey and alumna of the UK Centre for Events Management

This article presents insights from the authors’ innovative Disrupt project that sought to trial different participatory research approaches as methods to examine events of dissent… The authors discuss the exciting possibilities but are refreshingly honest in the conclusions about the related costs and wider resources required when trying to adopt challenging and participatory methods for research. Dr Katherine Dashper, School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Leeds Beckett University, UK

LI, S., BLAKE, A., & THOMAS, R. (2013). MODELLING THE ECONOMIC IMPACT OF SPORTS EVENTS: THE CASE OF THE BEIJING OLYMPICS. ECONOMIC MODELLING, 30, 235-244

This paper sheds light on ‘imperfect’ market structures and how such a setting may influence the modelling of impact assessment. I found major practical recommendations for sport event organisers! Yann Tournesac, PhD Candidate, School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Leeds Beckett University, UK

As a social scientist I am often at pains to recommend to students that they go away and read economic impact research. This paper reminds us of the intersectionality of (sport) event impacts, advocating for the value of economic impact analyses for furthering our understanding of national and international policies for instance. Dr Thomas Fletcher, School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Leeds Beckett University, UK

LI, Y., WOOD, E. H., & THOMAS, R. (2017). INNOVATION IMPLEMENTATION: HARMONY AND CONFLICT IN CHINESE MODERN MUSIC FESTIVALS. TOURISM MANAGEMENT, 63, 87-99

Whilst this paper focuses on modern music festivals in China, there are clear observations and recommendations applicable to the process and implementation of innovation further afield. What is particularly insightful is the focus on organisational capabilities rather than the process of innovation. Dr Julia Calver, School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Leeds Beckett University, UK

The rigorous application of concepts from management studies makes this a highly recommended read for my event management students with a particular interest in festivals. Dr Ian Lamond, School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Leeds Beckett University, UK

MAIR, J., & DUFFY, M. (2015). COMMUNITY EVENTS AND SOCIAL JUSTICE IN URBAN GROWTH AREAS. JOURNAL OF POLICY RESEARCH IN TOURISM, LEISURE AND EVENTS, 7(3), 282-298

This paper addresses complex issues of community building through events and how policymakers try to achieve a complex series of outcomes, including building social cohesion and local identity by staging community festivals. By engaging with Lefebvre’s idea of the right to the city, the paper also makes an essential link between local and universal issues of participation and citizenship. Professor Greg Richards, Tilburg School of Social and Behavioural Science, Tilburg University, the Netherlands 

A refreshing study that contributed to a rich vein of research that challenged scholars to assess events and festivals more critically and to draw on more sophisticated ways of interrogating the social value of events. Professor Rhodri Thomas, School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Leeds Beckett University, UK

MICHOPOULOU, E., AZARA, I., & RUSSELL, A. (2020). INVESTIGATING THE TRIANGULAR RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN TEMPORARY EVENT WORKFORCE, EVENT EMPLOYMENT BUSINESSES AND EVENT ORGANISERS. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF CONTEMPORARY HOSPITALITY MANAGEMENT

I am very excited that this study pays specific attention to temporary event workforces who are yet fully understood. I use this in my teaching on the event gig economy.  Dr Yanning Li, School of Hospitality and Tourism Management, University of Surrey, UK, and alumna of the UK Centre for Events Management 

This paper provides great insight into temporary event workforces and event employment businesses which I find innovative. The paper enabled me to discover the importance of talent management in events, and the critical role that intermediaries play. Yann Tournesac, PhD Candidate, School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Leeds Beckett University, UK

PINOCHET COBOS, C. (2019). CULTURAL FESTIVALS IN URBAN PUBLIC SPACE: CONFLICTING CITY PROJECTS IN CHILE’S CENTRAL ZONE. JOURNAL OF LATIN AMERICAN CULTURAL STUDIES, 28(3), 465-482

This paper deals with the space, time and politics of urban festivals. It links the circulation of branding and promotional concepts in the global ‘space of flows’ to support for the collective expression of views generated in the ‘space of places’… This is an excellent example of contextualising events as part of wider urban and development strategies, rather than viewing them as a separate part of urban life. Professor Greg Richards, Tilburg School of Social and Behavioural Science, Tilburg University, the Netherlands

Drawing on case studies of festivals in three Chilean cities, this paper examines how the context of a festival can transform cities, foregrounding tensions and disputes that remain hidden throughout the rest of the year. Although festivals are often presented as liminal spaces of togetherness and hedonism, Pinochet Cabos positions cultural events also as spaces of social tension where issues of segregation, inequality and gentrification unfold. Dr Katherine Dashper,  School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Leeds Beckett University, UK

RICHARDS, G., KING, B., & YEUNG, E. (2020). EXPERIENCING CULTURE IN ATTRACTIONS, EVENTS AND TOUR SETTINGS. TOURISM MANAGEMENT, 79, 104104

This is an interesting paper that identifies the breadth of factors that need to be considered when measuring the experience economy.  It highlights how memorability, authenticity and the co-creation of experiences promote active engagement by the visitor and influence the overall individual experience. Heather Lishman, Director, Association of British Professional Conference Organisers, UK

This well conducted quantitative study provides evidence of the differing cognitive, conative, affective and novelty components of event experience. The multi-item scale used clearly highlights the importance of active attendee involvement in creating satisfying event experiences. Professor Emma Wood, School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Leeds Beckett University, UK

ROCHE, M. (1994). MEGA-EVENTS AND URBAN POLICY. ANNALS OF TOURISM RESEARCH, 21(1), 1-19

Maurice Roche’s paper helped to establish events as a subject of serious scholarly study.  Its theoretical and empirical sophistication represented a step change for this field. Somewhat helpfully, it also outlined a research agenda that subsequently guided others. It is little wonder that it has been cited more than 700 times. Professor Rhodri Thomas, School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Leeds Beckett University, UK

This is a seminal paper in mega-events research, helping establish event studies as a distinct field. Nearly thirty years ago, Roche set out a research agenda that has guided others and paved the way for a burgeoning body of theoretical and empirical work on the mega-event phenomenon. Dr Katherine Dashper, School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Leeds Beckett University, UK

SEMRAD, K.J. AND RIVERA, M. (2018). ADVANCING THE 5E'S IN FESTIVAL EXPERIENCE FOR THE GEN Y FRAMEWORK IN THE CONTEXT OF EWOM. JOURNAL OF DESTINATION MARKETING & MANAGEMENT, 7, PP.58-67

I encourage my postgraduate students to read this paper as illustration of how rigorous research can be used to address the concerns of practitioners.  In my view, it also highlights very clearly the practical value of theory. Professor Rhodri Thomas, School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Leeds Beckett University, UK

The study builds upon the 5Es model of festival experience and assesses to what extent these elements create memorable moments which in turn encourage eWOM. The paper provides useful guidance for those involved in event tourism explaining how manipulation of the 5Es can positively impact the volume and content of destination related eWOM. Professor Emma Wood, School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Leeds Beckett University, UK

SNOWBALL, J.D. AND ANTROBUS, G.G. (2020). FESTIVAL VALUE IN MULTICULTURAL CONTEXTS: CITY FESTIVALS IN SOUTH AFRICA. TOURISM ECONOMICS, PP.1-20

This article underlines the importance of interdisciplinary research in the design and adaptation of a valuation framework. It emphasises the strain festivals place on diverse communities and provides unique perspectives. In doing so, it helps challenge economic outcomes as the most important indicator of success. Dr James Musgrave, School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Leeds Beckett University, UK

I especially like this article because it is highly critical of economic analysis as the a priori indicator of event success/failure. Analyses that do not account for other (arguably softer) impacts, such as wellbeing, sense of belonging, and audience diversity, are fatally flawed. The findings point towards a growing acknowledgement that event impacts must be assessed using human-centred approaches. Dr Thomas Fletcher, School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Leeds Beckett University, UK

STEVENSON, N. (2019). THE STREET PARTY: PLEASURABLE COMMUNITY PRACTICES AND PLACEMAKING. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF EVENT AND FESTIVAL MANAGEMENT

This is a very interesting deep dive into an event (a street party), bringing together some very diverse literature from a range of social science perspectives and applying this worldview to the party. I think we need more of this type of work, to help us understand the lived experience of event organisers and attendees. Dr Judith Mair, Business School, The University of Queensland 

This paper deals with the Archway area of London, where I grew up. The undertones of polite “conviviality without engagement” echo my own experience of living in the area. Interestingly, the paper highlights the continuity of grass-roots creativity, even in the face of neighbourhood change and gentrification. The very local form of placemaking contrasts with the political use of events as a means of ‘reclaiming the streets’, as outlined in the paper by Carla Pinochet Cobos (2019). Professor Greg Richards, Tilburg School of Social and Behavioural Science, Tilburg University, the Netherlands

WEBER, K., & HSU, C. H. (2021). BANDING TOGETHER IN A FESTIVAL CONTEXT: EXAMINING EFFECTS OF A JOINT-STAKEHOLDER EXTERNAL SERVICE RECOVERY. TOURISM MANAGEMENT, 83, 104204

This important research looks at the role of multiple stakeholders in creating consumer experiences, and how they can effectively take responsibility when things go wrong.  It could be used by stakeholders to pro-actively agree recovery strategies as part of the overall planning process. Heather Lishman, Director, Association of British Professional Organisers, UK

This paper resonates with much of the content of our marketing modules. (It) shines a spotlight on the importance of good communication as key to recovery from systems failure, in this case at festivals. Dr Lucy Laville, School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Leeds Beckett University, UK

WOOD, E. H., & DASHPER, K. (2020). PURPOSEFUL TOGETHERNESS: THEORISING GENDER AND AGEING THROUGH CREATIVE EVENTS. JOURNAL OF SUSTAINABLE TOURISM, 1-17

These researchers should be proud to draw attention to such a topic.  I think research like this can make a real difference for people. Dr Kelly Semrad, Associate Professor, Rosen College of Hospitality Management, University of Central Florida, USA

This paper studies the overlooked group of older women, providing a counterpoint to the usual focus on younger people at high profile festivals. The narrative approach gives us interesting stories of the gendered nature of their event experiences, which is usually less visible. The equity-based approach also shows that women’s experience is not equal, with the framing of ‘craft’ and ‘creativity’ being based on class backgrounds of the participants. Professor Greg Richards, Tilburg School of Social and Behavioural Science, Tilburg University, the Netherlands

ZIAKAS, V. (2014). PLANNING AND LEVERAGING EVENT PORTFOLIOS: TOWARDS A HOLISTIC THEORY. JOURNAL OF HOSPITALITY MARKETING & MANAGEMENT, 23(3), 327-356

This paper may not have launched the idea of creating an events portfolio, but it was one of the first to theorise this, to incorporate ideas of sustainability, legacy and leveraging and to take an innovation from industry (destinations were already putting together ‘portfolios’ of different types and scales of events) and apply a strong academic lens to it. Dr Judith Mair, Business School, The University of Queensland, Australia

One of several Ziakas contributions that offers a clear analysis of practice followed by recommendations for action.  For many, including me, it illustrates how academic research can simultaneously be rigorous and practical. Professor Rhodri Thomas, School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management

 

To find out more about the UK Centre for Events Management and our 25 year celebrations visit the School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management website.

 

Dr James Musgrave

Head of Subject / School Of Events, Tourism And Hospitality Management

James has extensive experience in research, consultancy, and training across a number of sectors such as events, hospitality and international manufacturing. His current interests are in corporate social responsibility, pro-environmental behaviour change and sustainable knowledge transfer. 

Professor Emma Wood

Professor / School Of Events, Tourism And Hospitality Management

Emma Wood is Professor in Events and Experiential Marketing and Research Lead for the UK Centre for Event Management at Leeds Beckett University. Emma specialises in the impact of events on social change within communities and on shared memory creation.

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