European Music Festivals, Public Spaces, and Cultural Diversity
Festivals are now a staple of many people’s cultural diets across Europe. Festivalisation denotes that festivals can no longer be regarded as merely periodic events, but, rather, as an increasingly popular means through which citizens consume and experience culture. Yet, whereas music festivals have the potential to connect people and foster tolerance, they may also reproduce inequalities and social exclusion. This project is a comparative study of music festivals as potential public spaces affording encounters with diversities.
Working collaboratively with local and EU partners, including the European Festivals Association and partners in each national context, our main challenge is to understand the coordination, representation and negotiation of cultural diversities in the context of music festivals. The project takes a qualitative, comparative approach to investigate across multiple research sites the meaning of the festival for organisers, festival workers, performers, audiences and the community more broadly. Methods of data collection include participant observation, surveys, research interviews, and visual-sonic methodologies.
Prof. dr. I.S. Woodward
A strong array of knowledge exchange events and partnerships with key partners in each national environment ensures effective knowledge utilisation beyond academic outputs. Anticipated outcomes of the project include its contribution to local, national and European understandings of the representation of cultural differences, and the development of innovative strategies and approaches festival organisers can use to promote cultural diversity and social inclusion in the festival context.
Inhale the future, exhale the past: music festivals and our park(ed) lives