Dr Louise Todd is an Associate Professor of Festival and Event Management in the Tourism and Languages Subject Group and Deputy Lead of the Tourism Research Centre (TRC) at Edinburgh Napier University, UK. She is Public Engagement Lead for the Business School and works across the school to support researchers in their PE initiatives.
Louise leads the Visual Methods and Ethnography (VM&E) in Interdisciplinary Research Group. She is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (HEA), Royal Society of Arts (RSA), Royal Anthropological Institute (RAI). Louise is also is a member of Visual Arts Scotland (VAS); Society of Scottish Artists (SSA); and the Leisure Studies Association (LSA). Louise has previously completed the Engaged Researchers' Academy CPD Programme with the National Co-ordinating Centre for Public Engagement.
Louise is an interdisciplinary researcher and her interests lie in arts and cultural tourism, festivals and events; and in these settings specifically, stakeholder, public, and community engagement, visual culture, visual research methods, visual art, and design. Louise is particularly interested in the critical potential of festivals to engage different groups of stakeholders. She has published her research in journal articles, book chapters, and presented at international conferences.
Louise is currently leading on a Royal Society of Edinburgh (RSE) Small Research Grant funded project titled: Staycations, localisation, community and place-making: Edinburgh as a destination in tourism recovery (2024).
She was the PI and academic lead for the cross-university UKRI funded Seven Kingdoms of Wester Hailes project, which Edinburgh Napier’s Public Engagement Forum led, working with a series of community partners (2020-2022). She continues to collaborate with community partners in Wester Hailes on research and public engagement initiatives.
Louise has previously been involved in further research projects as a Co-investigator and has experience of managing a large-scale international project in her earlier role as the Research Assistant attached to the externally funded 'Generation Y in Asia' project (from 2011-2012).
Louise has experience in designing and delivering public engagement events and activities on a national and international basis. She has designed, produced, and delivered public engagement with research initiatives around the theme of festival cities at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, the Edinburgh International Science Festival, Soundwalk September, and Explorathon: European Researchers Festival. Louise has also been involved in the design and development of Knowledge Exchange and CPD activities, including an externally funded Executive Programme she co-delivered in Singapore to members of the Tourism industry. The content of this was informed by her published research.
In terms of teaching activity and Programme Leadership, Louise was responsible for the MSc International Festival and Event Management programme from 2015 until 2021. She has developed two research-informed Postgraduate modules at PG level: Experience Design and Management for Tourism, Hospitality and Events and Contemporary Issues in Festivals and Events. Louise also leads the Tourism, Society and Visual Culture module at Postgraduate level. She has designed and currently leads a research-informed Undergraduate module: Festival and Event Design and Delivery, amongst other modules.
As a Postgraduate research supervisor, Louise is an experienced supervisor and examiner of PhD and DBA projects. She was previously responsible for the coordination of MSc dissertations in the Tourism subject area. She also contributes regularly to PGT and PGR modules, with her own research and expertise in research philosophy and methods.
Before working in Higher Education, Louise’s background was in visual art, media, and festivals. She worked in marketing and communications management roles and was responsible for the design, management and marketing of arts, festivals, media, entertainment, and educational events, within organisational and festival contexts.
Louise is a practicing visual artist. Having studied visual art at Undergraduate, and art and design at Postgraduate, level at Glasgow School of Art, she continues to use her drawing and painting practice to inform her research, and her research interests inform her art practice. She exhibits her work regularly, has curatorial experience, and has had her work selected for and exhibited in the Royal Scottish Academy's (RSA) 197th annual exhibition.
Louise is currently a Non-executive director and Board of Trustees of Edinburgh Printmakers, centre for printmaking and the visual arts (2021-present)
Arts festivals and events; cultural tourism; hallmark event tourism; festival cities;
Visual art; visual culture and methods including semiotics, and photo-elicitation; arts-based methods;
Stakeholder and community engagement; public engagement; place-making; walking methodologies;
Tourism and event brand image; brand relationships; experience design; design and aesthetics;
Teaching and Learning:
Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA)
Programme Leader: MSc International Festival and Event Management
Personal Development Tutor: MSc International Festival and Event Management
Postgraduate Research Student Training: Delivery of specialist research sessions in Advanced Qualitative Research Methods (Semiotics and Visual Methods - Photo elicitation); Research Philosophies (Social Constructivism)
Module Leader: Experience Design and Management for Tourism, Hospitality and Events (PG)
Module Leader: Festival and Event Design and Delivery (UG)
Module Leader: Tourism, Society and Visual Culture (PG)
Coordinator: MSc Dissertations in Tourism subjects (PG)
Industry Project Supervisor: Live Project supervision directing students' work with Industry to undertake research projects, including Edinburgh International Film Festival, Historic Environment Scotland, and Charity organisations
Work Based Learning: Supervisor of students undertaking industry work placements