Research Output
The event and festival life cycle – developing a new model for a new context
The events and festivals literature relies on theories and models borrowed from tourism studies which may insufficiently account for the unique characteristics of events and festivals. Using four case studies from Australia, United Arab Emirates (UAE) and the UK,
this paper analyses event and festival life cycles using the Tourism Area Life Cycle (TALC) framework (Butler, 1980).
Design/ methodology/ approach
The paper is conceptual in that it theorises the range of event and festival life cycle trajectories, however four event case studies are also used to illustrate this approach.
Findings facilitate an extension of Butler’s model to include additional trajectories and accompanying underpinning critical factors that better explain and predict the nature of events and festivals.
Research limitations/ applications:
The paper is based on four case studies from the cultural sector, which is ideal for developing theory but limits the contexts examined in this paper. The findings are only applicable to recurring events and festivals.
Practical applications.
ournal of Contemporary Hospitality ManagementIn the new model seven different pathways, ranging from continued growth to cancellation, suggest potential opportunities and risks for events and festivals. The results are of particular relevance for event managers, who can use the case studies and trajectories as reference points for event growth and consolidation.
Social Applications:
The case studies reveal that successful events are seen to have strong ties to their local communities and are rooted in the destination.
Originality/ value:
The paper’s originality is in both the context of utilising diverse international cultural festival and events as case studies and the proposal of 7 alternative pathways for events and festivals,which extend Butler’s TALC to the unique context of these temporal phenomena.

  • Type:


  • Date:

    20 March 2017

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  • DOI:


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  • ISSN:


  • Library of Congress:

    GV Recreation Leisure

  • Dewey Decimal Classification:

    394 Events Management


Holmes, K., & Ali-Knight, J. (2017). The event and festival life cycle – developing a new model for a new context. International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, 29(3), 986-1004.



TALC; Event trajectories; Event life cycles; Butler; Events and Festivals

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