Welcome to Edinburgh for a two-day seminar on festivals, culture and tourism. Edinburgh is a capital city, an international city, and an eventful city. The strategic use of festivals has benefited Edinburgh for many years, but what are the costs and who pays? Where is the space for grassroots festivals, both in the calendar and in the city’s urban topography, and what is being done to make it available to residents and communities?
In the festival city, we’ll be asking what is a “festival” anyway? Has the word lost its meaning, or gained new ones? What role do host communities play? How are festival places experienced, marketed and remembered? Who are the guardians of festivals today, and what does the future hold? Festivals and cultural tourism of all kinds will be welcome for discussion.
The aim of this meeting is to review the current challenges that festival cities face: grassroots involvement, sustainability in all its forms, emerging trends in the festival landscape, and the forces at work in these turbulent times. The meeting will bring together leading international scholars in the festival and event studies field, as well as industry practitioners and policy makers in Edinburgh and beyond.