CIRCLE Conference Experience, Sarajevo 2018

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Dr Louise F.  Reid, Lecturer in Digital Marketing tells us about her trip to the CIRCLE International Conference;

CIRCLE International is the Centre for International Research in Consumers, Locations and Environments research group that hosts an annual global conference.

On the 4th April 2018 I travelled to Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina to the 15th CIRCLE International Conference at the Holiday Hotel, Sarajevo.

Since September 2018, I have coordinated conference activities and worked with the organising committee at the University of Vitez to make this year’s conference a great success.  The conference began with an opening ceremony where our founder Professor Vignali addressed the audience followed by our keynote from Mr Bruno Bojić, PhD who presented a prestigious government award to the University of Vitez.

PhD student graduations and professorial presentations for the CIRCLE virtual college (a partner to CIRCLE International) followed.

We then visited a local restaurant for dinner as part of an optional programme and this gave the opportunity to engage with Prestigious Professors, other Academics and PhD students. This was an incredible opportunity to discuss research interests and teaching practice.

5th and 6th of April was filled with live VIVA exams and research tracks where everyone presents their research within topics relating to consumers, locations and environments. My research presentation was built upon my student Aomthong Linthong’s undergraduate thesis and fuelled an interesting discussion around fashion business models in small businesses to support the progression of this work into a wider research project.

I met with colleagues from the previous conference and heard about how their PhD research has evolved over time and where their academic careers have led them.

At the conference dinner, I introduced the University of Gloucestershire as the 2019 location for CIRCLE International.  This was met with great excitement and colleagues shared their experience of Gloucestershire and the Cotswolds.

After the closing ceremony,there was some free time where myself, Professor Rashid, Professor Raj and Professor Kaufmann explored Sarajevo.  We tasted their famous pomegranate juice and walked through a city with a great history to tell.

During our final evening, we walked through Sarajevo old town and heard about the cities legacy from the 1992-1995 war that began on the 6th April.  Memorials are displayed throughout the city to remember the tragedies of those lost in terrible circumstances.

An eternal flame remains lit in the town centre as a memorial to those lost in the second world war.  After hearing about the city and its heritage we went to a restaurant by the river where we were served a luxurious barbeque.  It was an incredible end to a great week and I always enjoy CIRCLE conferences.

The CIRCLE community always supports one another (like a family) and afford PhD students and early career researchers and professors to learn from each other’s experiences which results in a multitude of teaching and research collaboration.

I look forward to hosting the conference next year at the University of Gloucestershire! It is an incredible opportunity to bring together our UoG academics, students and business contacts to share our ideas with the International CIRCLE community.

I would like to thank Professor Claudio Vignali for this incredible opportunity!

Information about CIRCLE International is available at:

Follow us on twitter: @2018Circle for updates on UoG 2019


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