module specification

LT5090 - Cities, Tourism and Eventfulness (2021/22)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2021/22
Module title Cities, Tourism and Eventfulness
Module level Intermediate (05)
Credit rating for module 15
School Guildhall School of Business and Law
Total study hours 150
70 hours Assessment Preparation / Delivery
40 hours Guided independent study
36 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
4 hours Placement / study abroad
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 100%   2,000 -word case study of an eventful city, to be chosen in consultation with the tutor.
Running in 2021/22
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Autumn semester North Tuesday Morning

Module summary

Cities, Tourism and Eventfulness is designed to equip students with an understanding of the significance of events for the management of cities, and of cities for the management of events.  The rise of the ‘eventful’ city in recent years demonstrates how cities have been using events strategically to tackle a range of post-industrial urban challenges – to boost the urban economy, as part of their regeneration strategies, to attract visitors and tourists, to rebrand the city, and to make it an attractive proposition for investment.  In the words of many boosterist slogans ‘a place to live, work, study and visit’. The events in question can be cultural events or business events.  They can be recurring events such as annual festivals, or one-off events that require competitive bidding (such as an Olympics or European Capital of Culture) and which may involve considerable investment in infrastructure.  Such event-led regeneration and the associated legacy-planning is typical of mega-events. But this approach has spread to the local level as the case of the London Borough of Culture programme where London Boroughs compete for GLA funding to stage a year-long festival.  To be successful in this, cities need to nurture their creative sectors and work in partnership with events organisations and cultural organisations.

Cities Tourism and eventfulness explores the conceptual basis for eventfulness, the ‘festivalisation’ of cities at different temporal and spatial scales and the implications of events and tourism for urban development, revitalization and sense of place, with particular reference to urban spaces and ‘quarters’ that are developed as a focus for events and tourism.

This module is a core for BA Tourism and Travel Management and BA Events Management, students and an option for BA Events and Marketing students.  As such it provides an understanding of the key role that events and events tourism play in the cultural and creative industries of cities and how they are used in eventful strategies to address key urban challenges which can be economic, social, cultural, planning or environmental.  The result is an array of events that are used to regenerate cities, animate public spaces and enrich the lives of residents and visitors.

This module aims to:

  1. Equip students with an understanding of the current debates and explanations of the reasons why cities aspire to become eventful.
  2. Increase awareness of the ways in which cultural events and cultural organisations can be used instrumentally to address urban problems      
  3. Examine critically the notions of urban entrepreneurialism, creativity, festivalisation,  place-making, event-led regeneration and legacy, 
  4. Increase awareness of the positive and negative impacts of using events, creativity and tourism in the revitalization of  urban spaces and ‘quarters’
  5. Develop skills of research and analysis in developing an original case study of an eventful city.


  • Definitions of  eventfulness, creativity and events tourism LO1
  • The key institutions and agencies responsible for managing eventful cities LO1
  • Urban events strategies LO2
  • Events tourism management and events as destinations LO2
  • Culture-based and event-led regeneration LO2
  • Managing cultural hubs, quarters and clusters LO3
  • Place-making and scale -  from mega-events to street festivals LO3
  • Festivals and events programming LO3
  • The positive and negative impacts and legacy of events on the city and its residents LO4
  • City marketing and branding – soft power and cultural diplomacy LO2
  • Visit to a regeneration area in London LO5

Balance of independent study and scheduled teaching activity

This module comprises weekly lectures delivered by the module tutor followed by seminar sessions to develop, explore and apply the ideas developed in the lectures.  Group and individual tasks in class will give student the opportunity to work with the key concepts developed in the module.  The seminars will also be used to support students in the development of their assignment task (the eventful city case study). 

A group visit to an area of event-led regeneration in London will give a practical demonstration of event strategies at work, legacy planning and implementation and impact evaluation.  This visit is designed to develop skills required for developing the assignment case study – identifying the components of eventfulness, scrutinising the impact of event-led regeneration and discussing the intended and unintended consequences of the strategy adopted. 

The module also makes use of the Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) in order to post material from the lectures and supply additional teaching material.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module students should be able to:

  1. Demomstrate an understanding of the notion of eventfuness and why cities aspire to become eventful (LO1)
  2. Apply the concepts and theories underpinning eventfulness to a specific case study (LO2)
  3. Appreciate the application of eventfulness at different urban scales from the large metropolis to the local area (LO3)
  4. Recognise the positive and negative impacts of using events, creativity and tourism on cities and local areas and their residents (LO4)
  5. Identify an appropriate ‘eventful’ urban case study in order to research and evaluate the stategic use of events in the city in question (LO5).

Assessment strategy

The assignment for this module comprises an up to 2,000 -word case study of an eventful city chosen by the student in consultation with the tutor. The case study can be from the UK or abroad.  However, it is important to choose a city where there is sufficient information in the public domain. The case study should contain a definition of eventfulness, outline the key challenges the case study city faces, identify the key bodies involved in promoting events and tourism in the city, identify the components making up the city’s strategy towards events and event tourism and the success or otherwise to date of the strategy adopted. Full use should be made of the key concepts and theories used in the module which are relevant to the chosen case study. 

The assessment addresses the learning outcomes as follows:

  • Demonstrates an understanding of the notion of eventfulness and problems the chosen city faces which has led to the strategic use of events (LO1)
  • Applies relevant concepts and theories to the specific case study (LO2)
  • Appreciates the use of events at different urban scales (LO3)
  • Recognises the positive and negative impacts of the city’s use of events, creativity and tourism on the city and its residents (LO4)
  • Identifies an appropriate ‘eventful’ urban case study, researches and evaluates the strategic use of events in that city (LO5)


Core Reading

Amore A (2019) Tourism and urban regeneration – processes, compressed in time and space London: Routledge

Additional Reading

Smith A (2016) Events in the City: Using Public Spaces as Event Venues London: Routledge

Richard G and Palmer R (2010) Eventful cities: cultural management and urban revitalisation, Amsterdam: Elsevier

Carter D.K. (ed) (2016) Remaking post-industrial cities, London: Routledge

Gold, J.R. and Gold, M.M. (eds) (2017) Olympic cities: city agendas, planning and the world’s games, 1896-2020, 3rd ed, London: Routledge.

Gold J.R. and Gold M.M. (2020) Festival cities: culture, planning and urban life since 1945, London: Routledge (in press)

Imrie R, Rees L & Raco M (2009) Regenerating London.  Governance, sustainability and community in a global city Abingdon: Routledge and e-book

Roodhouse S ed (2010) Cultural quarters: principles and practice Bristol: Intellect 2nd edition

Smith A (2012) Events and urban regeneration. The strategic use of events to revitalise cities, Abingdon: Routledge

Smith, M.K. (ed) (2007) Tourism, Culture and Regeneration, CABI Publishing

Tallon A (2013) Urban regeneration in the UK, London: Routledge 2nd edition