Capacity-building, culture, and the contribution of public festivals: evaluating 'Cardiff 2005'
Cognizant Communication Corporation
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Festivals and special events are increasingly encouraged by urban policy makers as driving local (and regional) economic and cultural regeneration, with the consequent justification of public investment therein. This has led to an emerging need for deeper understanding of their contribution, and for evaluation beyond the purely economic. In order to explore these issues, the Cardiff 2005 festival is used as a case study. This initiative attracted £1.3 million from the Millennium Commission's Urban Cultural Programme, matched by Cardiff City Council, to fund a year-long celebration of Cardiff's centenary. This article, therefore, explores the significance of “fit for purpose” festival/special event evaluation, highlighting critical issues in evaluation practice. Ultimately, although a cultural success, Cardiff 2005 represents something of a missed opportunity, in terms of both legacy and fit for purpose evaluation. It is suggested that this has implications for similar initiatives both in the UK and internationally.
Clifton, N., O’Sullivan, D., and Pickernell, D., (2012) 'Capacity-building, culture, and the contribution of public festivals: evaluating 'Cardiff 2005'', Event Management, Vol.16. pp. 77–91.
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