rceived service quality of special events' offerings Modification of the 1991 version of the SERVQUAL method would aim at the reduction of ambiguity in expectations definition and unstable dimensionality (Babakus and Boller 1992; Carman 1990; Cronin and Taylor 1992). Babakus and Waller in fact suggest (p. 265) that "it may not be fruitful to pursue the development of a standard measurement scale applicable to a wide variety of services". In order to achieve this modification an attempt would be made to add one or two dimensions to the standard instrument so that the scale would become more contextual for situations concerning special events. To identify these additional dimensions factor analysis would be conducted on variables (factors) to identify relevant and critical factors.
Respondents would be chosen from the customer base of the targeted special events company(ies). External validity would be addressed by also surveying non-customers. The sampling scheme deployed would be stratified random sampling. The company's entire customer base would be organized according to the demographic variable of customer income. The underlying assumption would be that the ability to purchase entertainment offered by the special events company is a direct function of the income of the consumer. However, income/ability should not be deemed to be synonymous with "willingness" to pay. Customer willingness assessment, on the other hand would be the first derived outcome of this study. A customer that believes that service quality is acceptable would be willing to make the purchase and a customer that is not convinced of the service quality would not be willing to purchase the special event's entertainment even if he/she could financially afford it. This organization would result in income strata classification of the customer base. From each stratum, respondents would be chosen following a random sampling scheme. Some judgmental adjustment(s) of the chosen sample would be initiated to reflect the peculiarities of the special events segment. For example, the company may hold some special events that are targeted to a specific base; a representative sample of such customer base would also be included within the sample. An attempt would be made to make the administration of the questionnaire as far as feasible unobtrusive by using distant contact methods. The data processed by the modified SERVQUAL 1991 would be back tested for reliability using
modified alpha statistic (Stanley, 1967). Taking the standard 5 dimension service quality measurement instrument SERVQUAL as a start point; an attempt would be made to factor out more dimensions for special events' industry