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Title: Traditional Festivals and Covid-19: Event Management And Digitalization in Times of Physical Distancing
Author: Estanyol, Elisenda  
Others: Universitat Oberta de Catalunya. Estudis de Ciències de la Informació i de la Comunicació
Citation: Estanyol Casals, E. [Elisenda] (2022). Traditional festivals and COVID-19: event management and digitalization in times of physical distancing. Event Management, 26(3), 647-659. doi: 10.3727/152599521X16288665119305
Abstract: The purpose of this research is to find out how the organization of events adapted to the COVID-19 lockdown and how digital transformation can be a solution for events when physical distancing is required. Using a qualitative approach based on case studies, the article analyzes the changes in the organization of traditional festivals during the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown, focusing on Spain’s five most populated cities. Complementary to the study, in-depth interviews were conducted with the heads of Protocol and Institutional Relations of the city councils in charge of organizing these events. The results show that, although some festivals were postponed, others were redesigned to be held without an audience, enhancing live streaming, strengthening communication through social media, and offering virtual tours. COVID-19 has been a catalyst for event digitalization. The existence as yet of only a small amount of scientific literature on how COVID-19 has impacted event and festival management makes this research a relevant contribution. This work provides insights for events crisis and emergency risk management, as well as for the digital transformation of festivals. The study highlights the need for contingency plans for organizing events in situations that require physical distancing and how online tools and virtual events can be part of this solution.
Keywords: festival
Document type: info:eu-repo/semantics/article
Version: info:eu-repo/semantics/publishedVersion
Issue Date: 27-Apr-2022
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