First Advisor

Heather Burns

Date of Publication


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (M.S.) in Education: Policy, Foundation and Administration


Educational Leadership and Policy




Event Management, Sustainability, Holistic, Music festivals, Special events -- Management -- Environmental aspects, Special events -- Planning -- Environmental aspects



Physical Description

1 online resource (viii, 135 p.) : ill.


Sustainably managed music festivals have significant value and can provide a multitude of benefits to a healthy, sustainable and desirable society if their negative impacts are mitigated and positive impacts cultivated. To reach this great potential, sustainable event management of music festivals must become widely adopted and expanded as common practice. To drive this improvement of sustainable event management, there is a need to first understand the barriers and success factors event organizers face moving their music festivals toward sustainability. This study uses a research design of mixed quantitative-qualitative methods: a survey of thirty diverse music festival organizers across the United States and interviews with five selected survey participants. Research draws on pertinent literature from sustainability theory and practice, previous research on sustainable event management, existing strategies of sustainable events, and lessons from organizational change studies. Findings revealed seven key barriers and four success factors associated with sustainable event management of music festivals as well as three specific needs of event organizers to improve sustainable event management. With these findings, seven strategies are presented to help event organizers adopt and improve sustainable event management of music festivals. This study is significant because it fills an important gap in the academic literature on events and sustainability. Additionally, this study is immediately applicable to Untied States music festivals. The findings were drawn directly from the perspectives and experiences of event organizers, and the strategies are designed to be specifically applied to their sustainable event management work.


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