Skip to main content

Please note: this event has passed

The online seminar presents the results of “Future Festivals South Africa” an 18-month Arts and Humanities Research Council research project (AHRC, grant number AH/P005950/1). The seminar will launch the final policy report of the project, with the discussion of its key findings and implications for policy. The project included extensive fieldwork and support for festival organisations during different phases of the COVID-19 pandemic in South Africa between November 2020 and March 2022.

The seminar will see reflections from Prof. Roberta Comunian and Prof. Jen Snowball on the project development, its methods and the collaboration between King’s College London and Rhodes University. Ms Fiona Drummond will discuss here the extensive mapping of the impact of Covid-19 on South Africa Festivals between 2019 and 2021. Highlights from the report will be presented by Prof. Snowball and Prof. Comunian. Dr Jonathan Gross will present some reflections on the results of the “Letters, Videos & Pictures from the Future” data collection. Mr Delon Tarentaal will present some insight from the quantitative analysis of online and offline audience participation during the pandemic. Conclusions will be drawn on the lessons learnt and their policy implications.

There will be an opportunity for Q&A at the end of the talks.

The final report from the project will be available to download from the 9th of March 2023.

This event is part of the African Leadership Centre's - Africa Week 2023 celebrations - taking place 6-10 March 2023.

This event is online.

Future Festivals Africa week


  • Roberta Comunian is Professor of Creative Economies at the Department of Culture, Media and Creative Industries at King's College London. She has previously led the AHRC international research network on “Understanding and Supporting Creative Economies in Africa". Her interests include creative industries, complexity and the relationship between cultural production and space.
  • Fiona Drummond is a PhD candidate in economics at Rhodes University, South Africa. She won medals for her Honours and Masters research awarded by the Economics Society of South Africa. Her interdisciplinary research applies geographic methods to study creative economies. Her research interests include creative labour markets, mapping creative economies and creative tourism.
  • Jonathan Gross is Lecturer in Culture, Media and Creative Industries at King's College London, where he is Programme Director for the MA Arts & Cultural Management. His research interests include cultural policy, cultural participation, and the cultural politics of hope. His current projects include “Creative Recovery: The Role of Cultural Policy in Post-COVID Urban Futures”, with colleagues at King’s and the World Cities Cultural Forum.
  • Jen Snowball is Professor of Economics at Rhodes University, South Africa. She is also the Chief Research Strategist at the South African Cultural Observatory (SACO). Her research interests in cultural economics include the impact and value of culture festivals, cultural economy mapping studies, employment in the cultural and creative industries, and international trade in cultural goods and services in emerging markets.
  • Delon Tarentaal is Lecturer of Economics at Rhodes University, South Africa. He specialises in mathematical economics and quantitative finance. His research interests include automation of portfolio management via recurrent and artificial neural networks as well as cultural economics focusing on the video gaming industry.

At this event

Roberta Comunian

Professor of Creative Economies

Dr Jonathan Gross

Lecturer in Culture, Media & Creative Industries

Event details