In applying for an internal leadership role recently at my university, I had cause to reflect on my academic portfolio and various achievements. This is something I do not do as regularly as I should because I am often too busy to see the wood for the trees, as the idiom goes. It is quite empowering do so and see a collective body of work including close to 90 peer reviewed articles and multiple grants to support these from competitive sources including the Australian Research Council and the International Olympic Committee.
I claim two core contributions in this piece. Firstly, since completing my PhD on volunteering in museums and cultural tourism settings in the early 2000s, I have continued to research on volunteering in relation to tourism and more recently event settings. My research has primarily contributed to understanding of tourism and event volunteering in terms of: a) mapping progress in the field and examining the theoretical perspectives that inform the study of tourism and event volunteering b) examining the event volunteering experience at major and mega events c) setting a research agenda to inform the direction of future volunteer research focused on mega sporting events (d) providing insights into how flexible work initiatives can be used as a management tool to recruit and retain volunteers; and finally, e) examining the volunteering legacies for host cities of the Olympic Games. These research streams have culminated in the commissioning of multiple field-defining edited books I have jointly led including People and Work in Events and Conventions (Baum et al., 2009), Event Volunteering: International Perspectives on the Event Volunteering Experience (Smith et al., 2015) for the Routledge Advances in Event Research Series and the forthcoming compendium volume Routledge Handbook of Volunteering in Events, Sport and Tourism (Holmes et al., 2021). A study by Lis and Tomanek (2021) within this Handbook conducted a bibliometric analysis of research on tourism, sports and event volunteering and from that source, I am highlighted as one of top 10 researchers in the field. Finally, of note related to the first research stream above, a paper I lead authored examining the theoretical perspectives informing leisure volunteering (Lockstone-Binney et al., 2010), was judged by the Managing Editors of international journal Leisure Studies as the 2010 entry in its list of the ‘30 most significant papers published in the journal over the last 30 years’. This is a considerable accolade given the substantial number of papers published in this top-tier journal over this extended time period.
More broadly speaking, aligned to my teaching specialisation of events, my impact relative to the development of the field of event studies has been clear and formative. From a teaching and scholarship perspective, I had a leading role in developing and refining Victoria University’s Event Management degree, which was one of the first to be offered in Australia. Overseeing the redevelopment of the curricula in 2008, I subsequently led a successful submission, which saw the program awarded the Best Education or Training Program at Australian Event Awards in 2010 and Finalist again in 2011 based on its academic currency, strong links with industry and graduate outcomes. Many of the learnings from this success were distilled in a series of articles focused the scholarship of teaching and learning in the emergent field of event studies.
Additionally, I have led and contributed to a number of seminal guest special issues that have delineated the boundaries of event studies and mapped progress in the field. These issues include: “Emerging Knowledge and Innovation in Event Management” (International Journal of Event and Festival Management, 2013), and the following issues of the leading journal in the field, Event Management: “Professionalism and Event Management” (2014), “Events in Society” (2015) and “Critical Event Studies: Issues and Perspectives” (2018). The latter issue was an initiative of the CAUTHE Event Studies Special Interest Group, which I co-convene with Associate Professor Martin Robertson (Edinburgh Napier University), a forum for event researchers to contribute to the development of field through knowledge sharing. I continue as an editorial board member of Event Management and the International Journal of Event and Festival Management and actively supported events research during my time as Associate Editor of the Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Management from 2016-2021.
Collectively, these contributions coalesce around understanding how tourism and event experiences can optimally be managed from a participant and workforce perspective, work which currently informs my teaching practice in relation to the Event Management Major of Griffith University’s Bachelor of Business program.
Written by Leonie Lockstone-Binney, Griffith University, Australia
Read Leonie’s letter to future generations of tourism researchers
Baum, T., Deery, M., Hanlon, C., Lockstone, L., & Smith, K. (Eds.). (2009). People and work in events and conventions. Oxfordshire: CABI. ISBN: 978-1-84593-476-7.
Holmes, K., Smith, K., Lockstone-Binney, L., & Shipway, R. (Eds.). (forthcoming). Routledge handbook of volunteering in events, sport and tourism. Abingdon: Routledge.
Lis, A., & Tomanek, M. (forthcoming). Profiling research on volunteering in events, sport and tourism. In K. Holmes, K. Smith, L. Lockstone-Binney & R. Shipway (Eds.). Routledge handbook of volunteering in events, sport and tourism. Abingdon: Routledge.
Lockstone-Binney, L., Holmes, K., Smith, K., & Baum, T. (2010). Volunteers and volunteering in leisure: Social science perspectives. Leisure Studies, 29(4), 435-455.
Smith, K., Lockstone-Binney, L., Holmes, K., & Baum. T. (Eds.). (2014). Event volunteering: International perspectives on the volunteering experience. Routledge Advances in Event Research Series. Abingdon: Routledge. ISBN: 978-0-415-82103-2