The study aims to show how festivals might impact rural areas and how perceptions of festival impacts on rural areas diﬀer among key groups of festival assemblers (i.e. organizers, visitors, locals). By mobilizing the notion of placemaking, the study identiﬁes six dominant rural festival spinoﬀs (i.e. attraction, consolidation, promotion, transformation, reinvention, revitalization), thereby increasing the conceptual understanding of the role and value of festivals in the rural context. By applying a combination of three samples, the study provides evidence concerning the perception of diﬀerent festival eﬀects on host places depending on the evaluation group. The results show that festivals are meaningful events that might be strategically used to sustain, create and reinvent rural assets. Furthermore, the study oﬀers evidence that perceptions of festival spinoﬀs vary among groups of assemblers, whereas a direct association with festivals either by organization or participation strengthens a positive view of festival spinoﬀs. The results also demonstrate that festivals might be utilized by policy makers to empower local inhabitants, to promote rural assets and to perpetuate or reinvent somewhat forgotten rural traditions, habits and myths. The increased liveability of rural areas should in turn be used to counter rural decline and the outmigration of young people.
Kwiatkowski, G., Oklevik, O., Hjalager, A-M., & Maristuen, H. (2020). The assemblers of rural festivals: organizers, visitors and locals. European Planning Studies, 28(2), 255-272. https://doi.org/10.1080/09654313.2019.1651829