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Research on Events as a Tool for Developing the Experience Industry

Priority areas of development: economics

Research Object: Organizations and institutions involved in the experience industry and leading event-driven activities. These organizations and institutions belong to such economic sectors as culture and the arts, tourism and hospitality, catering, physical training and sports, education, and media and telecommunications.

Research Goal: To analyse event activity in Russia and foreign countries and to identify its importance for various groups of stakeholders.

Research Objectives:
1) To perform a comparative analysis of existing forms of event activity with the goal of identifying best managerial practices;
2) To characterize event-industry-specific activities and to identify prospects for intersectoral collaboration and agency cooperation in the process of organizing events;
3) To research the role of event activity in the implementation of experience industry goals and objectives that are focused on satisfying the requirements of different categories of customers, preserving cultural heritage, and developing the sector, in general, and creative industries, in particular;
4) To research the impact event-driven activity has on raising the attractiveness of a tourist destination, developing certain types of tourism, and enhancing tourism potential;
5) To assemble and justify the range of services provided by different actors involved in the organization of event-driven activities as a tool for the experience industry.

Research Methods: Among the methods used for the research were the statistical analysis of source information, surveys of event visitors and participants, expert surveys of event organizers and other groups of stakeholders, and the semantic analysis of websites devoted to cultural events, in particular Museum Night.

Empirical Base of the Research: A statistical analysis of websites, belonging to subjects of the Russian Federation, that focus on events held in the regions; a factographic analysis of best practices used to organize Museum Night events in various Russian cities and towns; visitor surveys of the Museum Night events held in St. Petersburg in 2012 and 2013; interviews with managers of cultural institutions that took part in Museum Night in 2012 and 2013; a semantic analysis of Internet sites devoted to Museum Night; visitor surveys and interviews with other stakeholders of Pori Jazz Festival 2013 (Finland); factographic research on experience at food festivals; a survey of service providers and customers of those services at re-enactment festivals; and interviews with hostel managers and owners regarding the challenges they experienced organizing event activities.

What makes this research unique is the systematization of a conceptual framework with regards to event activity in the experience industry; in the generalization of event-activity practices in different regions of Russia and abroad; in the development of a service approach to determine how cultural events influence regional socio-economic development and satisfy the requirements of certain groups of stakeholders; in determining the role certain spheres of the experience industry play in raising the attractiveness of tourist destinations on the basis of ongoing cultural events. We studied the how event-driven activity influences better management of cultural organizations and institutions and spurs these institutions to take more creative approaches in their work.  

The Main Research Results:

  • We identified peculiarities, conditions, and trends in the development of event-driven activities as a tool for the experience industry. We justified factors for increasing the role of event activity within a post-industrial economy to develop certain areas of the experience industry.
  • We took a systemized approach to the analysis and developed methodological principles for researching regional event-driven activity in the field of culture. An event-based analysis of all of the subjects of the Russian Federation defined the role of individual industries and sectors in the organization of different types of events.  
  • We developed approaches for classifying the services provided within event-driven activities. This classification is based on the principle of targeting services towards satisfying the requirements of specific stakeholders. Thus, in the course of our research, we defined the influence events have on various aspects of socio-economic development. The importance of event-driven activities for different categories of the population was quantified.
  • We studied the practice of event-driven activities influencing the experience industry with regards to tourism development. We identified factors that make various types of tourist destinations attractive, depending on event type, scale, and genre. We made recommendations concerning event promotion within a tourist destination's informational space.
  • We continued developing an empirical database on a longitudinal research project of large-scale cultural events, eg Museum Night. Because visitors were asked new questions, the variety of factors, motivations, and behavioral models increased. We compared the dynamics of selected managerial practices and the level of visitor satisfaction from Museum Night events in 2012 and 2013.
  • Empirical data obtained during our research has been applied to the educational process within the Master's programme: Experience Economy: Management in Hospitality and Tourism. During scientific and research seminars and field trips, the programme’s students participate in collecting, processing, and analysing sociological data on various subprojects of this research.

The research results were presented to St. Petersburg administrative bodies responsible for cultural issues as well as at a number of scientific conferences, and were used by cultural event managers.

Implementation of the Research Results: Implementation of the results is viable at the level of regional administrative bodies responsible for culture and other sectors related to the experience industry.  

Field of Application: All industries, organizations, and institutions involved in the experience industry.  

Development of the research object can occur by increasing the period of longitudinal observations focused on certain events in the cultural sphere, particularly the Museum Night event, and also by intensifying the analysis of the socio-economic impact of cultural events. 


Дедова М. А. Методология организации исследований системы управления услугами в рамках культурных событий // Известия Санкт-Петербургского университета экономики и финансов. 2013. № 4. C. 104-106. 
Дедова М. А. Управление услугами фестивалей, in: Теории и практики управления: вызовы современности: сборник трудов VIII ежегодной (III международной) научно-практической конференции факультета менеджмента (4-5 апреля 2013г.). Санкт-Петербург : Отдел оперативной полиграфии НИУ ВШЭ – Санкт-Петербург, 2013. С. 496-506. 
Borovskaya I., Dedova M. Creativity in Hospitality Industry: Study of Hostels in St. Petersburg // Santalka: Filosofija, Komunikacija. 2014. Vol. 22. No. 2. P. 137-144. 
Gordin V. E., Dedova M. Social Entrepreneurship in the Informal Economy: a Case Study of Re-enactment Festivals // Journal of Enterprising Communities. 2015. Vol. 9. No. 1. P. 6-16. doi