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What is the difference between 开 and 举办 in the following sentence?

They both mean "to hold". Can you use both for big events like 奥运会 or little events like 派对 or 聚会 ?

每年两次运动会,一次是水上运动会,一次是田径运动会。除此以外,学校还举办圣诞和春节音乐会,和文化节等活动。

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开 has other meanings beside; 'to hold' (events)

举办 is a specific term for 'hosting' and 'organizing'. If an organization 举办 something, you expect it to be well organized.

开 is less formal than举办. E.g. 在我家开派对 is less formal than 在我家举办派对.

在我家开派对 can mean you casually call a few friends over to your house. Not much preparation is required

  • We say 开班会, not 举办班会 because 班会 is a regular event, no additional organizing is needed

  • We say 举办学生会选举, not 开学生会选举 because 学生会选举 is a formal event that needed to be organized

In short, 开 (to hold) is more general and casual; 举办 (to hold) is more specific and formal (officially hold and organize)

开 itself carries the meaning of 'hold', it doesn't need to be short for anything

Depend on the context, 开 can be short for:

  • 开办 (open and operate/ open and run) e.g. 开(办)学校

  • 召开 (call for and open) e.g. (召)开会议

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  • Are both ok with big events like Olimpic games. Is there a difference in this case of big events¿ – ANTXON Aug 11 at 12:34
  • 日本上次开奥运会是在1964年 and 日本上次举办奥运会是在1964年 mean the same, (just 开 sounds more casual and 举办 sounds more formal) As you said, it is a huge event, using the formal term '举办' is more fitting. – Tang Ho Aug 11 at 12:41
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开 is short and casual version of 召开. So, the reason why 开 is casual is because of that omitting in spoken.

Both 召开 and 举办 are formal, but they denotes different meanings.

召开 means convene or convoke. E. g. convene a meeting.

举办 is understood as 举行(to hold or stage),经办(to handle). So, 举办 involves planning, applying, preparing, documenting, organizing, etc besides hold the event per se. E. g. 举办奥林匹克运动会 implies that they will do more work such as planning, preparing, organizing, etc to make sure the Olympics opened successfully. Well, 召开奥林匹克运动会 just simply means open the Olympics and doesn't imply anything else as 举办 does.

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开 - to open (informal)

召开 - to open(formal)

办 - to hold(informal)

举办 - to hold(formal)

There are general rules about formal and informal, big events and little events. However, it's still better to spend time remembering different collocations. These are my personal feeling about various collocations.

开运动会 √ authentic, colloquial expression

召开运动会 sounds a bit weird, 召开 relates more about meetings

办运动会 ok, but less frequently used than 开

举办运动会 √ authentic, formal expression


开派对 √ authentic, colloquial expression

召开派对 sounds a bit weird, 召开 is too formal for a party

办派对 we don't use it like this

举办派对 sounds a bit weird, 举办 is too formal for a party


开聚会 we don't use it like this

召开聚会 we don't use it like this

办聚会 √ authentic, colloquial expression

举办聚会 sounds a bit weird, 举办 is too formal for a party

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