Critical Event Studies

Events and festivals as radical and liminal spaces

During the open space there was a balance between discussions which were conceptual and practical. This really reflected the diversity of the audience and also the diversity of the area of study. Events and festivals have always been characterised as being liminal phenomena, underlining the anthropological roots of the much of the study in the area. However, is this a restrictive way to think through festivals and events? David Jarman summarises the debates of the open space here…


Image by David Jackmonson (Flickr)

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Is event management superficial and self-congratulatory?

This is a topic that we have discussed since the publication of Rojek’s book ‘Event Power’. David McGillivray wrote a response to this book  and this theme was picked up in the open space. David Jarman offers the notes from the discussion….

Events management….why are fireworks are always the ‘go to’ image for course prospectus!!

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The role of experts

The next summary is on the theme of experts. During the panel discussion, Beatriz Garcia, explained that a ‘caravan of experts’ has been created around mega-events such as the Olympics but questioned whether this was a good thing. This topic was then picked up in the open space as summarised by David Jarman below…

Talk to the experts by Mai Le (Flickr)

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A question of methods…

James Musgrave from Manchester Metropolitan University has written up the notes from the discussion about methods….


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Events are interruptions…

As part of the ‘open space’ activity at the symposium various topics (designed by delegates) were explored. Each discussion was minuted and I will be posting the summaries of the discussions here. The first is from Andrew Smith from University of Westminster on the theme of interruptions…

Interruption by Adam Meek (Flickr)


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Summary of the panel discussions

David Jarman from Edinburgh Napier University has been quick off the draw with his summary of the panel debate and subsequent Q&A. David has blogged the notes on his own site as well which can be found here.


I will be posting the summaries of the open space discussions over the next few days so please send me any write ups you have from the day.

Massive thanks to everyone who contributed! Keep posted for more updates.

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Final panel member profile

Our fifth panel member is Ellie Turner from Salford based, Walk The Plank. Walk the Plank create some of the best outdoor events in the country, including my favourite event of the year…Manchester Day Parade (maybe being a Mancunian makes me biased!)…

iphone pics 131011 002

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Your hosts for the #CritEvents symposium!

So I realised that I had not properly introduced the team behind this event….the planning and development of ideas has been a group effort and I would like to mention Allan Jepson, David Jarman, Caroline Jackson, David McGillivray, Ian Lamond and Rebecca Finkel in particular, for chipping in with ideas and suggestion along the way.

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AHRC Cultural Intermediation and the Creative Urban Economy project to sponsor symposium

We are really pleased to announce that the symposium is sponsored by the AHRC funded Cultural Intermediation and the Creative Urban Economy project. Kerry Wilson, from Liverpool Institute of Cultural Capital and part of this project will be in attendance at the symposium.

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