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Developing Tourism Events & Experiences

Developing Tourism Events & Experiences
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In the previous lecture, I spoke about product development. And now, what I’d like to do is present on developing tourism events and experiences which are a particular part of the product development of a destination. I will first review the meaning of two key terms. Talk about the rationale and process for developing tourism and sustainable tourism events and experiences. Talk about evaluating the feasibility of events facilities and services and then just provide some readings for you.
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In terms of the meaning of key terms. Tourism events and experiences are considered to be part of the meetings, incentives, convention and events product that in turn are part of the overall tourism product offering of a destination. We call them MICE markets. Mice markets include mainly business leisure and incentive travelers a tourism event is usually an organized activity based on a specific theme or experience , such as a trade show a conference or convention could be a performing and art performance. It could be a festival, a sporting event or even a night market, for example, in the place Laos. The type of event will determine the facilities and services require to mount it.
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For example, a festival may not require a large capital investment with an exhibition. For example, a festival may not require a large capital investment with an exhibition but an exhibition and convention center, or an Olympic sports stadium requires substantial investments.
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Much of the other destinations tourism is often highly seasonal in nature. That makes it difficult to sustain existing or new investments in the in public access and destination infrastructure and private sector facilities and services. And because it can involve pre and post event activities in a destination events tourism may have deep backward and forward linkages in the destination of the economy. So developing events and special experiences is a strategy for expanding the tourism product offering of a destination attracting new markets to a destination, especially balancing out the seasonal pattern of tourism at the destination. Attracting further investment , strengthening the financial and economic viability of the tourism sector and local economy, and of course increasing positive awareness about the destination.
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The tourism events and experience development process is basically a series of steps. Starting with event design and development, the event logistics in space in particular which deals with issues such as venue programme transportation event stuff, setup and take down periods event organization, who will do the planning who will be the decision taker and so forth. Marketing and communications for event marketing For example, communications to participants at during the event and post event communications, and the results framework identification of the key baseline indicators of success. How do we know that our event delivered the results that we expected of it.
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And of course with that a monitoring and evaluation framework and measurement of the changes in the base line indicators as a result of holding the event . Whether it’s an Olympic games , a world cup for football or it could just be a tourism fair, for example, at any particular level.
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In evaluating the feasibility of developing events and experiences , we need to understand that the structure of events, the event can be of a global nature, such as Olympic games a universal exposition, for example, Which is periodically held every four years or every five years. It may be a hallmark events festivals trade fairs, religious events that occur periodically. It may be one time regional events such as festival sports, trade shows and performances and then periodic and one time local events, festivals markets fears concerts and competitions. So, this is hierarchy of events in terms of scale. And at the top of the triangle you’re dealing with huge events, such as Olympics or Universal Exposition.
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Obviously at that level the tourism volumes and the expenditures are very substantial. But bear in mind that they occur irregularly only every four or five years where as you go further down the triangle towards the more local events, the tourism volumes are lower, the expenditures are lower . But quite often the impact can be greater, if there’s regularity and if the targeting of the event is appropriate. So, the process of evaluating the impact of developing specific events covers a number of of critical criteria . One is the number and types of tourists attracted, the financial costs and benefits associated with developing the facilities .
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Related to that the economic costs and benefits at a broader level, the market share and growth prospects that the event would actualize and the long term value that, it will provide in terms of benefits to the community, the environment and to the economy as a whole. So, the sustainability issue is a very important part of the feasibility evaluation process. There’s an example from the Sydney Convention Centre in Darling Harbour which I happen to be involved with, which is a facility that is it’s been out now for about twenty years. It has a capacity for about 2500 persons, 8000 theater capacity with about 3500 square meters of exhibition space.
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And it is booked five to six years in advance typically, So it’s an example of a facility with a rather high cost tag. But the tremendous advantage of this is that it brings tourism and visitor demand usually in the off peak periods of the year, thus, helping to boost the tourism facilities and services, the infrastructure associated with that. The process of developing a major event facility requires a number of steps. The first is the initiation which is about developing a vision, the objectives identifying the target markets and a facility brief. The next step is defining the concept.
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So that has to do with site analysis feasibility study, but market and financial developing the business case, looking at the employment requirements in the business model. Next, designing and financing. So, this is basically developing the facility concept in terms of a master plan, undertaking the necessary studies like an environmental impact assessment detail design and financing structure. The next phase is the setting up process to procurement of contracts quantity specifications permits contracts, and pre-opening marketing engaged in such facilities Next of course is execution arranging financing, The drawdown the construction of works operations plan. And finally, operations involving an organization blueprint licenses commissioning space leasing , operation , maintenance, schedules and manuals.
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Turning to the actual component dealing with the feasibility of a major event facility. There are a number of steps. The first step is the situation analysis which should be familiar to you know , it’s really the beginning of most of the planning or development process or even feasibility process that we’ve discussed. There are a number of steps in that as you can see. Second is the analysis of supply and demand to determine the level of demand available the gap in the supply. and how much that would support in terms of development of an event facility . The third step is identification of the event facility specification and its impact in terms of its structure and location.
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And of course on the environment on the social structure and on the economy . Next would be the financial simulation and evaluation which looks at estimating the capital requirements the financing structure, the forecasting the revenue and assessing financial performance. And finally, of course in all feasibility is you have to go or no go decision. Usually, it’s a rich of process where if initially looks a little bit doubtful, you go back and review the project components to see where adjustments can be made to improve performance, and then you go back to go or not go to desicion. So broadly, in some way that is the feasibility evaluation process.
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And then I’ve left you with some readings that further elaborate on the lecture Thank you very much.

This lecture will introduce how to develop tourism events and experiences, which are a particular part of the product development of a destination.

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Tourism Policy and Planning

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