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Research project on best practices

Overall objective

Measuring and reporting on the social impact of international congresses and business events.



Assess the current state of knowledge in social impact management as applied to the business events industry.

Understand the current applications of social impact management for business events and conferences from case studies, and as experienced differently according to type of event, sector and cultural context in the hosting destination.


Leveraging previous research done on legacy in business events, this new research project will deliver knowledge on evidence-based practices and will propose a framework for converting theory into applied practice for the industry. It will also anchor its conceptual framework into formal social impact theory. Finally, it will include recommendations for monitoring, measuring and reporting on impact.

From a literature review on 1) the social impact, and 2) the benefits of congresses and business events, and 3) a review of case studies carried out both from existing literature and interviews, the research team will strive to:

  • Clarify the different definitions and applications of social impact used in the business events industry

  • Identify the typologies used to categorize the dimensions of social impact, and analyze their variation according to the sectors of activity

  • Build a model detailing the different dimensions of social impact applicable to congresses



The research project on best practices for delivering social impact will include:

  • A review of case studies of legacy and social impact initiatives already completed or in progress in the business events and association conference sector

  • An assessment of what the sector currently does as far as developing impact practices

  • A series of best practices for the development of successful social impact projects organized by types of legacies desired and taking into account the point of view of the beneficiary of the impact

  • A compendium of recommendations for use by the industry

  • Dissemination of this research in scientific publications and industry media.

  • Public lectures


Lead researcher

Mohamed Reda Khomsi is a professor of governance in tourism, event management and E-Tourism at the Department of Urban Studies and Tourism in the School of Management at the Université du Québec à Montréal, Canada. Holder of a Ph.D in urban studies, his research focuses on the impact of major events, analysis of the event framework, history of events, smart destinations and  governance models. As part of the #MEET4IMPACT research team, he is looking for best practices and conditions of success for best impact results and modeling for future use.

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