|The paradigms of analysis within the pages of this book have as their root a conference co-organised in 2007 by the School of Services Management, Bournemouth University and the Centre for Festival and Event Management, Napier University Business School. While the conference, ‘Event Tourism: Enhancing Destinations and the Visitor Economy' brought forward journal publications particular to the conference themes, the range of research concepts, research practice and practical example evidenced around this indicated a need for a more expansive research text. It is from this environment that the book has emerged.
The interrelated nature of festivals and events, the fact that they are cultural, business, economic and emotional occurrences makes thematic distinction a great challenge. We, the editors, have nevertheless divided the work into four core subject themes, each with an introduction by one of the editors:
Part one, Destination, Image and Development;
Part two, Community and Identity;
Part three, Audience and Participant Experience, and
Part four, Managing the Event.
Through reading these articles the thematic division of the book will become clear. Equally we anticipate many other areas of investigation, interpretation and inference will emerge for the reader from the particular focus given to the subject by the respective author. This is as it should be. While student numbers for the subject area of festivals and events are growing, publication routes are emerging and the event sector grows so too the call for research synthesis is more evident.
As a relatively new research area so too there is a call for ensuring that academic rigour is applied to the analysis of festivals and events and their affect. This is all the more the case when there is a proliferation of research interest in, and evaluative skills being applied to, the social and cultural effects of festivals and events. The other micro and macro economic and business management requirements of events have not disappeared in the meantime. Academic and professional legitimacy for the subject area can only be maintained if quality is evident through all areas of analysis. Thus, we believe International Perspectives of Festivals and Events: Paradigms of Analysis is a distillation of the potential to offer strong components in a multi-disciplined whole.