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Report: Event sector is not identified as a source of livelihood which hinders growth

Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment
Publication date 27.1.2023 10.10 | Published in English on 27.1.2023 at 16.51
Press release

Future development areas for the event sector include identifying the impact of the sector, removing obstacles to growth, and improving the compilation of sectoral statistics and data. These are the conclusions of a report by the event industry organisation Tapahtumateollisuus ry. The report was commissioned by the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment.

The purpose of the report is to produce information that identifies the event industry as a source of livelihood and an operator in urban areas. In addition, the report aims to produce information to support national urban policy and to lay the foundation for identifying and developing business opportunities in the sector and to help the sector recover after the coronavirus pandemic.

Event industry is a service business realised in complex business networks

In 2019, the turnover of the Finnish event industry was about EUR 2.35 billion. The sector employs approximately 20,000 people on a permanent basis and 120,000–175,000 on a temporary basis.

The report states that in recent decades the event industry has grown into an extensive sector and a source of livelihood but it has not yet been defined or identified as a whole in our society. As a result, it has been difficult to systematically recognise the social impact of the sector. The coronavirus pandemic and the restrictions on gatherings imposed in 2020–2022 made these problems visible.

The report defines event industry as a service business, which is realised in complex business networks. The sector’s activities tend to be labour-intensive, temporary, fragmented and multi-sectoral. 

By defining and identifying the event sector, it is possible to accelerate its development in a goal-oriented manner. For example, legislation regulating public events does not recognise the event sector as a source of livelihood, but at the same time it regulates the sector through a number of laws. Taking into consideration the special features of the sector is a prerequisite for boosting growth and employment in the sector, according to the report.

Cities are pioneers in identifying the event sector’s significance and impact

Of all the operators in society, cities have been the quickest to recognise the importance of the event industry, the report says. However, there are differences between cities in how they identify and measure the impacts of events on the economy, image, identity and the experiences of wellbeing and sense of community. Cities also make use of events in different ways to achieve these objectives.

Measuring the impacts of events and improving the knowledge base would improve knowledge-based management. Domestic events and major international events organised in Finland play a key role in attracting new urban residents, citizens and tourists. Improving the seamless cooperation between the event sector and cities is important for international competition as well.

Petra Tarjanne, Ministerial Adviser, Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment, tel. +358 295 063 691, petra.tarjanne(a)
Katja Palonen, Chief Specialist, Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment, tel. +358 295 047 071, katja.palonen(a)
Kati Kuusisto, Specialist, Tapahtumateollisuus ry, tel. +358 44 338 0005, kati.kuusisto(a)
Sami Kerman, Managing Director, Tapahtumateollisuus ry, tel. +358 40 563 4655, sami.kerman(a)

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