ATLAS Special Interest Group

The coordinator for this Special Interest Group is:

Greg Richards

Breda University of Applied Sciences

The Netherlands


The ATLAS Events SIG was founded in 2011, and since then it has organised a wide range of activities related to events research and education. The main objective of the group is to enable members to work together to analyse and understand events and festivals as social, cultural and economic phenomena, and to add to the body of knowledge on events and their effects.


The group aims to:

  • Develop and support transnational research on events
  • To stage expert meetings and other information exchange activities related to events
  • To produce publications of interest to Group members and to the wider academic and practitioner communities

A number of international meetings have been held by the group both at the ATLAS Annual Conference and as stand-alone expert meetings. These meetings have also resulted in a number of publications, including the research monographs Exploring the social impacts of events, Event Design: Social perspectives and practices, and Experiencias turísticas de festivals y eventos. Conference papers have often been included in special issues of journals edited by group members, including issues of Event Management, the International Journal of Event and Festival Management, and the Journal of Policy Research in Tourism, Leisure and Events. The group has also developed a number of research projects, including the Event Experiences Project, which developed the Event Experience Scale, the Carnival Experiences Project and the Multilingual Event Research Project.


If you want to contact the SIG coordinator, please fill in the form HERE

If you want to join this SIG, please fill in the form HERE


Annual review of activities 2022

The ATLAS Events Group continues to undertake research and produce publications related to events, event experiences and event management. The long-running ATLAS Event Experiences Project continued to collect data for events in 2022, concentrating on Carnival and the effects of Covid-19 on event experience. These data will be fed into the ongoing World Leisure Organisation project on physical and virtual event experiences. Greg Richards presented an initial review of the findings of this project to the Research Seminar of the School of Events, Tourism and Hospitality Management at Leeds Beckett University in May. The text of this presentation is available online.


Members of the Events Group also continued work on the Multilingual Events Management Project. An analysis by Emmy Yeung and Rhodri Thomas (2021) on publications in event management in the period 2009-2019 underlined the dominant position of English in indexes such as Scopus. We undertook an initial scoping study of event management publications in other languages, and found a wealth of papers that were not being picked up by the major indices (Richards, 2021). The Events Group then undertook a more structured survey in a number of different languages to gauge the extent of this ‘knowledge gap’ more fully. We have now assembled a database of publications in Arabic, Croatian, Czech, Dutch, Italian, Portuguese, Slovenian and Spanish, which indicates that only around 10% of the papers published in these languages are currently indexed. We will be publishing the full findings of this research shortly.


The ATLAS Events Group also participated in the organisation of the SIG meeting on Festival Cities and Tourism, jointly organised with the Cultural Group in 2020. More information on the forthcoming publication from this meeting in the Journal of Policy Research in Tourism Leisure and Events is available in the Cultural Tourism Research Group report in this volume.


The ATLAS Events Group also had a role in the ATLAS Middle East WEBINAR on Expo 2020: Local and International Perspectives and Impacts. This session reflected on the World Expo held in Dubai between October 2021 and March 2022. There were presentations on the traditions and heritage of the UAE (Latifa Mubarak Alali and Latifa Abdulla Albedwawi), the different pavilions of the 192 Countries at Dubai Expo 2020 (William McCarthy) and Multilevel Dialogue of Cultures at EXPO 2020 (Dora Farmaki). Greg Richards presented an international overview of the effects of World Expos as ‘Pulsar events for the eventful city’. The entire webinar can be found on the ATLAS YouTube channel:


The ATLAS Events Group is also organising a Special Track during the ATLAS Annual Conference in Cork in September 2022. The theme is “Festivals & events: offering wellbeing, solidarity and hopefulness in times of uncertainty”, and the Track Convenors are Bernadette Quinn from TUDublin in Ireland and Maarit Kinnunen from the University of Lapland in Finland.

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