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Chasing MICE and fellow travelers: A history of the convention and visitor bureau industry

Robert C. Ford (College of Business Administration, University of Central Florida, Orlando, Florida, USA)

Journal of Management History

ISSN: 1751-1348

Article publication date: 11 April 2008




The purpose of this paper is to provide a review of the factors and forces that led the creation of the convention and visitor bureau industry and profession to illustrate how historical events influence managerial outcomes.


A variety of historical documents and records discovered and reviewed offer insights into identifying the factors that led to the need for and type of organizational outcomes.


This review allows an extrapolation of the past onto the future to illustrate how social, technological, and economic changes created the need for organizational responses for those who are geographical dispersed in small organizations.

Research limitations/implications

By tracing the evolution of one profession, it is possible to see the value and logic of professional organizations. Since the research literature and the available records are incomplete, the review is as well. This lack of a complete record makes any conclusions drawn or forecasting problematic.

Practical implications

Any historical review offers insights into the present status of the phenomena under review and some insights into its future. This review provides an understanding of how and why professional organizations are created and identifies how the key inducements they offer their members must, like any organization, induce their continuing support.


This paper reviews the history and evolution of a profession and its associated professional organization that is now large and growing larger but to date has received little academic attention or interest.



Ford, R.C. (2008), "Chasing MICE and fellow travelers: A history of the convention and visitor bureau industry", Journal of Management History, Vol. 14 No. 2, pp. 128-143.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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