David McGillivray

Professor, interested in events, culture, digital participation & sport.


A look back at 2014 and a look forward to 2015

Since I last blogged just before the turn of the year a lot has happened. In this post, I look back at the end of 2014 and forward to some exciting research projects coming up in 2015.


Firstly, along with colleagues at Gray’s School of Art and Glasgow School of Art, we finally completed our Collective Futures project, culminating in the publication of our final report and updating of our web resource. We’re due to present our thoughts about the next stage of our work early in 2015 to Creative Scotland and hope to have something to update soon.



The practice-research project Digital Commonwealth is also still ongoing and we’re undertaking a number of dissemination activities now, including an academic publication focused on ‘Young people, digital media making and major events’ which we hope to publish in Spring 2015. In March 2015 we’re also hosting a public engagement event focused around Archiving Community Storytelling which will include academic, policy and practitioner communities coming together to discuss the technical, legal/ethical and competency-related issues facing those people producing online content with community members.

Research-output and ‘impact’

In terms of the macro-level research environment, I was submitted to the Research Excellence Framework (REF) under Unit 36 and, while there were  areas for improvement, we were delighted to have scored 3 and 4* ratings for all our submission under the ‘impact’ category. This was good to see as as one of our case studies contained work derived from #citizenrelay and Digital Commonwealth, projects that I’m very proud of. In the latter part of 2014, I had a couple of articles published – one relevant to the Scottish Referendum ‘Scotland 2025: Independent or Dependent Event Nation?’  and another relevant to ongoing research I’ve been involved in with a colleague looking at Fan Parks and Olympic Live Sites and their relationship with urban civic space. The article ‘From Fan Parks to Live Sites: Mega Events and the Territorialisation of Urban Space‘ was published in Urban Studies and we also produced this short vodcast to make the work more accessible to a wider audience.

In the early part of 2015, I’ve also had a co-authored book chapter published which focuses on ‘Culturing Sport Mega Events: Leveraging Public Value‘ in a text by Bryson, Crosby and Bloomberg focusing on Creating Public Value in Practice: Advancing the Common Good in a Multi-Sector, Shared-Power, No-One-Wholly-in-Charge World, CRC Press. In the same thematic area, we’ve also been actively pursuing research outputs emerging from the Leveraging Parasport Events for Sustainable Community Participation project in which I’m a co-investigator along with Prof Laura Misener (PI) of Western University, Prof David Legg of Mount Royal University and my colleague Prof Gayle McPherson at UWS. We’re close to having our first article published in early 2015 and recently took our interim findings to a Carnegie Public Engagement Event hosted in one of Glasgow’s Commonwealth Games venues at the Emirates Arena.

As is the norm in the world of academia, I’ve also been looking forward to the next project and am awaiting news on 3 research grant applications over the next few months. Each builds on threads of work on 1) digital participation 2) leveraging major sports events and 3) social media and the Olympics. Here’s hoping I’ll be able to share some good news in the next post.


David McGillivray • February 27, 2015

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