Rural Development and Commerce the Harvest Festival of Oland, Sweden, Community Coopetition and Fields of Tension CANCELLED

Friday, July 18, 2014: 11:42 AM
Room: 423
Hans WESSBLAD , Department of Organisation and Entrepreneurship, Linnaeus University, Kalmar, Sweden
Locally, larger events have economic or social impacts on its communities. The clear economic and social value of frequent rural events calls for an integrated action of rural development. As an alternative to assessing the economic or social benefits of the whole Harvest Festival event on Oland, Sweden, the composition of cooperating and competing interrelated events that comprise the host community's (Oland) event portfolio can be studied. The synergies are to be developed and the current outcomes are to be enhanced. The study will examine the event portfolio of a rural community.

Ethnographic methods will be used. The fieldwork will start from a board member perspective of the event company; the Harvest Festival of Oland AB. Data collection will include participant observation, interviews, review of archival materials and social network analysis. Collective interpretations and different concerns of the communities influence the scope of rural development.

The active relations within the events portfolio support the ability of the event to produce a variety of experiences. A conceptual synergy lies at the heart of each singular event. Some ideological conflict between individualism and collectivism may occur. However, community identities, civic esteem, and economic benefits are although enhanced at Oland.

The Harvest Festival as an institution and the tourist destination of Oland, Sweden, constitute the ability to make the most of the event portfolio. Event organizers operate within a formal and informal event network. This frames the cooperative efforts to host events. Therefore, the event portfolio stands as an organization where economic and social developments generate synergy between handicrafts, various cultural events and food happenings. All together they unite the community and develop the tourism industry.