Should Festival Be Smarter?: ICT on Mass Events – The Case of the Exit Festival (Novi Sad, Serbia)

Should Festival Be Smarter?: ICT on Mass Events – The Case of the Exit Festival (Novi Sad, Serbia)

Uglješa Stankov (University of Novi Sad, Serbia), Vanja Pavluković (University of Novi Sad, Serbia), Juan Miguel Alcántara-Pilar (University of Granada, Spain), Marija Cimbaljević (University of Novi Sad, Serbia) and Tanja Armenski (University of Novi Sad, Serbia)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-2927-9.ch012


The trend of information and communication technologies (ICT) employment to enhance transactions and to deliver better experience to visitors of mass events has been growing increasingly popular over the years. The emergence of “smart tourism” agenda which highlights new, more sustainable ways of business management, experience enhancement and destination management also creates new opportunities for ICT employment in mass event. Thus, this chapter discusses existing ICT holding potential for smart approach employment on mass events. An additional case of Exit festival was used as an exploratory evidence to support the main idea of the chapter. Based on comprehensive literary review and additional information on visitors' familiarity with ICT gained from the Exit festival, recommendations for mass event managers are presented.
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Ict On Mass Events: Towards Smart Tourism Approach

The review of the relevant literature showed that all ICT applications in this field can be roughly distinguished to two basic types according to its main purpose – visitors-centric applications and managerial ones (Catherwood & Van Kirk, 1992; Lee, Boshnakova, & Goldblatt, 2016). Visitor-centric applications are usually intended to serve various pre- and on-festival experiences enabling visitors’ easier interaction, identification, transaction and enhancing the experience thought co-creation. For example, Tomorrowland’s (Boom, Belgium) tickets come in the form of radio-frequency identification (RFID) wristbands that employ personal ticket information and facilitate a “cashless” environment. At the same time, wristbands allow wearers to connect with one another on social media sites and embedded LED lights can be remotely triggered by the festival, producing light shows from the crowd (Rubinstein, 2015). Managerial applications are usually concerned with visitors’ management in the preparation phase, event organization, on-site applications and analysis phase. Again, in the driving Tomorrowland’s example, RFID wristband allow real-time transaction reporting and audience insight for post-festival personalized communication. Another example is the innovative use of ultra-fast wireless access coupled with network attached storage devices at The Vieilles Charrues Festival in Carhaix, France, to support organizers, press representatives and volunteers. Likewise mass event, this three-day festival has a challenge with a wealth of data to store and to share using temporary infrastructure that has to be stable and easy-to-use (Buffalo, 2014). The study of Lexhagen, Nysveen and Hem (2005) from Storsjöyran music festival held in Östersund, Sweden, showed the importance of mobile coordination and efficient implementation of mobile services that were perceived as enjoyable and useful among both festival goers and organization staff.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Biometric Identification Technologies: The process of identification is related to human characteristics. Typically includes fingerprint and iris scanning, facial, voice, hand geometry or signature recognition.

Mobile Movement: The extensive use of smart phones creates more opportunities for smarter business models. Smart phones are always with consumers and they are always on serving not just for communication, but for information search, socializing, entertainment, shopping, etc.

Event Management: Project management of the event itself. It involves creating and managing different activities of an event before actually launching the event.

RFID: It stands for radio-frequency identification and refers to the use of radio waves to access information stored on tags attached to different objects.

Mass Events: A planned gatherings of a larger body of people at a specific location and for a specific purpose. It requires sophisticated coordination of all related operations.

Co-Creation: An approach to bring together parties (e.g. event organizer and visitor) in a business process in order to jointly create a mutually desirable outcomes.

Smart Destination: A new step in the evolution of ICT that enables destinations to build their competitiveness based on the interoperability of systems and co-creation of tourism products.

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