Call for Papers | “Events, Urban Spaces and Mobility”, Special Issue of Annals of Leisure Research. Call ends September 1, 2019

Guest Editors

  • Dr Michael B. Duignan, Coventry Business School, Coventry University, UK
  • Prof David McGillivray, School of Media, Culture and Society, University of the West of Scotland, UK

This special issue seeks to critically examine the relationship between events, urban spaces and mobility. Specifically, it seeks to explore how and why events enable and/or produce new spatial (re)configurations as a result of hosting and how these changes influence mobility, exploration, engagement and/or consumption across host environments – whether that be at an international, national, regional, city and/or community level.

Events, irrespective of their size and composition, influence the way people move, explore, engage and/or consume across host environments (Giulianotti et al, 2015; Mhanna et al, 2017). They are often managed in private venues, yet are increasingly staged in public spaces (Smith, 2015). Utilising urban public spaces to house events, whether a beach, park or plaza, often requires temporary rearrangements, producing what are sometimes referred to as ‘Host Event Zones’ (HEZs) – designated areas where real-time activities take place (McGillivray et al, 2019). Sometimes HEZs are public and open, other times they are private and closed, requiring a ticket to access. Beyond the demarcated boundaries of HEZs, events also extend their territorial presence and reach in a number of creative ways, including the emergence of ‘fringe spaces’. For example, food festivals have sought to engage peripherally located restaurants as a way to move visitors out of central urban areas (Duignan et al, 2017). In contrast, mega sport event organisers create strategically-located ‘live sites’ and ‘fan parks’ to house non-sporting cultural and commercial activity, deploying tactics to circulate visitors to and contain them within global spaces of consumption (Armstrong et al, 2017). Relatedly, a nascent body of critical research has illustrated how new spatial conditions have the power to include and exclude particular social groups across the event’s lifecycle (Walters and Jepson, 2019; Duignan et al, 2019). It is with one or more of these issues in mind that we invite contributions that either conceptually, methodologically and/or empirically examine these relationships, inclusive of but not limited to:

    • Event mobilities (how actors move around host environments)
    • Events and accessibility (physical, social, psychological)
    • Events and the visitor experience
    • Event and (re)imagined spatial configurations
    • Event activism and preserving rights to the city
    • Events and inclusive public space
    • Methodologies for exploring event mobilities
    • Governance, regulation and festivalisation
    • Events and entrepreneurial activity.

Various sizes and composition of events will be considered, whether it be a small local cultural festival right through to mega-sporting events across any international context.

Key Dates and Submission Information

Please send proposed paper title, name of author/s and an abstract of no more than 300 words to the Guest Editors, Dr. Michael B. Duignan and Prof. David McGillivray.


  • 31 May, 2019 – Open call for papers
  • 1 September, 2019 – Expression of interest
  • 10 September, 2019 – Acceptance/rejection to authors based on expression of interest submitted
  • 15 January, 2020 – Submission of full papers by authors

We look forward to receiving expressions of interest and please do not hesitate to get in touch with the guest editors if you have any questions.


Armstrong, G., Giulianotti, R., and Hobbs, D. (2017). Policing the London 2012 Olympics. New York: Routledge.
Duignan, M.B., Everett, S., Walsh, L., and Cade, N. (2017). Leveraging Physical and Digital Liminoidal Spaces: the Case of the #EATCambridge Festival. Tourism Geographies, 1, 1-22.
Duignan, M.B., Pappalepore, I., and Everett, S. (2019). The ‘summer of discontent’: Exclusion and communal resistance at the London 2012 Olympics. Tourism Management, 70, 355-367.
Giulianotti, R., Armstrong, G., Hales, G., and Hobbs, D. (2015). Global sport mega-events and the politics of mobility: The case of the London 2012 Olympics. The British Journal of Sociology, 66(4), 118-140.
McGillivray, D., Duignan, M.B., and Mielke, E. (2019). Mega sport events and spatial management – Zoning space across Rio’s 2016 Olympic city. Annals of Leisure Research, DOI: 10.1080/11745398.2019.1607509-
Mhanna, R., Blake, A., and Jones, I. (2017). Challenges facing immediate tourism leveraging: evidence from the London 2012 Olympic Games, Managing Sport and Leisure, 22(2), 147-165.
Smith, A. (2015). Events in the City: Using Public Spaces as Event Venues. London: Routledge.
Walters, T., and Jepson, A. (2019). Marginalisation and Events. London: Routledge.
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