Leisure & Events Research

Leisure plays a key role in our society, economically but also socially, by promoting community building and social inclusion, among other things. Leisure is important in shaping who we are. The way we spend our leisure time has become increasingly important for our well-being and quality of life.

Our students, lecturers and researchers develop academic knowledge, and devise new concepts for this relatively young business sector, focusing on two main themes: leisure experiences, and events & placemaking.

In the first theme, we help our leisure industry partners to design experiences that enrich people’s lives, using innovative tools such as storytelling and imagineering. Our Experience Lab boasts innovative (behavioural and neuroscientific) tools to measure experiences as well as to enable the evaluation and optimisation of experiences. We also study how leisure experiences can be managed and marketed. We actively develop academic knowledge and provide our industry with tools to improve their experience offerings.

The second theme is all about analysing the use of leisure to create physical locations and events, and the role of leisure attractions and events in the development of leisure practices and experiences. There is a specific focus on the role of leisure in processes of regional and urban development and the formation and maintenance of communities. We combine insights from academic research and professional practice to provide tools for cities, regions, attractions and events to develop engaging experiences and to improve the quality of life.

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