The event industry is worth £39.1 billion in the UK and estimated at more than £48 billion by 2020 (Benjamin, 2014). The event industry has built so much that governments now support and promote events as part of their strategies for economic development and destination marketing (Berridge, 2006). Events generate considerable economic benefits once established, however many events also have substantial social and environmental impacts which can be positive or negative (McGrath,2010). As events generate such a large amount of money in the industry, it is important to understand the impacts, the management of stakeholders, and their integral role in the events management process. This essay endeavors to further that understanding by using both academic and industry examples.
Events can simple be defined as "themed public celebrations" (Piper, 1965). To explore further, an event is an experience that is crafted in consequence of a wide variety of goods and services provided by the people for a temporary occurrence (Silvers, 2004). Events aim to pass on a combination of educational, cultural, social or intellectual enrichment (Silvers, 2007). However no definition adequately sums up the emotional responses which many would define their own experience of the event by (Getz, 2012). This feeling cannot be described in any academic model or practitioner example and is argued to be the ultimate impact all events try to create.
When looking at the definition of events are there certain common characteristics to classify them; however no two events are the same as every event is unique stemming from the blend of management, program, setting and people (Getz, 2005). They're temporary in nature, they are where people congregate, they are unique occurrences and they often show cultural or ritual values (Bladen et al, 2012).
From an academic perspective events can be divided by their typology (Getz, 2012) such as religious, cultural, sports, political or business (Razaq,2009). They can readily be classified in terms of how they are different in form: their program, the venue or the expectations of experiences they provide (Getz, 2007).
They can also be categorized according to size (Bowdin et al. 2006). Mega-events are defined as being so large they affect the whole economy (Allen et al, 2005). These events are so big that they filter into almost every aspect of life during the event, for example the Olympic Games 2012 affected transport, industry, and retail.
Hallmark events are defined as taking place in the same destination and are events that are synonymous with the name of the location, these events gain widespread recognition and awareness’ (Allen et al, 2005). An example could be Notting Hill carnival, its name synonymous with its position.
Regional events would include examples such as the Beautiful Days festival; these events usually generate a significant economic impact to the host as they attract many visitors.
Local events involve the resident population in a shared experience of mutual benefit (Berridge, 2007). These local events usually carry educational messages (Baum,2009). This can be applied to Exeter’s Respect festival raising awareness of diversity within the community (Exeter-Respect, 2014).
However there are flaws with this system, for example Glastonbury festival by definition would fit into a regional event, but the scale and popularity of this event; and that it’s synonymous with its name would also place it within the hallmark events category.
Another argued flaw is that hallmark events can be "mega" in their size or significance; however this is not a defining characteristic. Therefore practitioners find it harder to place events into such broad concepts.
Underestimating events can lead to underestimated facilities and