Music festival at the Eden Project with domes and pink flags

Sustainable Festival Management BA(Hons)

Engage with the future of festivals as part of this cutting-edge course.

Key details
Penryn Campus
Course duration
3 years / 4 years
Full-time / Professional Placement
UCAS code

Course overview

It’s a fascinating time for the global festival industry; it’s seeing rapid growth while embracing exciting new technologies. Increasing demand for experiential entertainment is driving innovation, while the sector is also grappling with the importance of inclusivity, accessibility and sustainability. 

Based in a creative arts institution, partnered with the pioneering Eden Project and located in a region with a thriving festival scene, this course is at the forefront of the future of festivals.  

You’ll explore the business of festivals, getting to grips with the essential matters of finance, marketing and project management, while gaining hands-on industry experience and putting your ideas into practice, running your own events or working with venues in Cornwall and further afield. 

You’ll graduate as a confident, resilient festival manager, with the ability to affect positive change that will benefit festival organisations, attendees, communities and the environment. 

Why study this course at Falmouth?

  • You’ll gain the skills, knowledge and insights to manage successful festivals, from music festivals, to those focusing on literature, food, comedy and more 
  • You’ll get real experience organising live events and engaging with industry, while benefiting from the breadth of leading sector expertise at the Eden Project, host of the Eden Sessions
  • You’ll learn from specialist staff with experience in music, events, hospitality, technical and entrepreneurial backgrounds, as well as relevant research interests 
  • You’ll develop a range of project management skills – essential for the fast-moving and ever-changing contemporary festival industry 
  • This course is accredited by both A Greener Future and Attitude is Everything, placing you at the forefront of current thinking on inclusivity, accessibility and sustainability 

This Sustainable Festival Management degree is accredited by A Greener Future and Attitude is Everything; two organisations championing sustainability and inclusivity in live events.

SFM logo lock up

Course details

Sustainable Festival Management course video

On this Sustainable Festival Management degree, you'll have the opportunity to gain a BA(Hons) degree over three years or study Sustainable Festival Management BA(Hons) with a professional placement option.

You’ll learn creative and innovative approaches to festival design, gain a firm grounding in planning and management processes, and develop skills in marketing, managing resources and engaging with clients.  

You’ll study a range of topics in operations, crisis management, wellbeing, sustainability and marketing and communication. 

Through live projects, field trips and guest lectures, you’ll also gain hands-on and up to the minute industry experience, as well as developing essential teamworking skills. 

The first year is all about developing a knowledge of the nature, scope and scale of the festival industry. Leading towards delivering your first collaborative event, you’ll explore all aspects of attendee experience, learn to understand the importance of wellbeing within the industry, design promotional communications, and investigate the complexities and contradictions that surround sustainable development.  


The Festival Industry

In your first module, you’ll explore the diversity of both the mainstream and niche sectors within the industry. You’ll investigate the key impacts of festivals and the importance of sustainable practice, as well as discovering the wide range of job roles that exist, and the skills required to succeed in them. 

The Attendee Experience

In this module, you’ll explore the motivations and key considerations of attendees. This will include the online experience, functional physical environment, attendee and staff interaction, use of digital technology and venue design. You will also consider how post-experience communication can impact attendee perceptions.  

Live Production Management

Engaging with a production of a live showcase on campus, you’ll have the opportunity to apply a range of skills, techniques and processes that contribute towards a well-organised and effectively delivered event. 


Looking at how wellbeing is connected to experience management and wider aspects of customer satisfaction, you’ll explore ways to develop wellbeing as a customer offer while addressing its importance within an organisation. Crucially, you’ll reflect upon the value of wellbeing for your own personal and professional development. 

Exploring Sustainability

You'll examine contemporary practices and positive responses across a range of sustainability topics including responsible consumption, production and economic development. You’ll also explore potential criticisms of the concept of sustainable development and ask whether it is truly the most appropriate way forward. 

Promotional Communications

You’ll create a promotional communications campaign that is designed to respond to the needs of an identified client. Through the development of the campaign, you’ll explore concepts such as positioning and messaging, and focus on achieving high impact communications. 

In year two, you’ll develop a more specialist, operational knowledge of sustainable festival management. You’ll apply research methods and gain further critical analysis and reflection skills across a range of modules supported by tutors, with a growing emphasis on independence and collaborative working.

You’ll also devise and deliver a live festival event and continue to develop skills in professionalism and communication. 


Festival Design

In this module, you’ll develop an understanding and application of legal aspects of festival management. This includes contracting, licensing, insurance and performance management processes. You’ll also continue to enhance your ability to develop a cohesive festival programme that relates and responds to key creative and thematic decisions.  

Project Management

You’ll learn a range of project management processes, including scope definition, objective setting, time planning, and evaluation methods. You’ll also examine alternative approaches to project management, including both waterfall and agile methodology, and learn how to apply these approaches to a variety of contexts. 

Research Methods

In this module, you’ll undertake a research project using ethically sound primary and secondary research methods. You’ll then present your project in the form of a poster presentation which will detail your methodology and findings. 

Festival Operations

In this module, you’ll engage with multiple elements of festival operations. You’ll explore volunteer management, stakeholder management, inclusivity and accessibility, waste management, traffic management and power considerations. You’ll also develop a greater understanding of festival technology, artist liaison and health and safety. 

Financial Management

Developing an understanding of different financial concepts and processes, you’ll learn to analyse financial statements, engage in financial planning and explore sources of finance. You’ll then create a grant funding bid proposal that outlines a proposed project including financial statements and projections. 

Collaborative Working

In this module, you’ll learn about the concept of ‘design thinking’. In multi-skilled teams you’ll work on a live brief and deliver a practical project, which you’ll then evaluate through a team performance review. 

You can choose to take an optional professional placement after your second year on a three-year programme, or after your third year if you’re studying for a degree with an Integrated Foundation Year. 

You’ll be responsible for finding your own placement, with support from the Employability team. 

Choosing this option will enhance your industry experience and skills while studying. 

How you’ll study during your professional placement

You’ll spend time working in a professional context, as part of a business or organisation. This can be in one role, or up to three, and must be for a minimum of 24 weeks. 

You’ll develop in-demand workplace skills, deepen your insight into industry and grow your network of contacts, all of which could help you get ahead in your career after graduation. 

Throughout this year, you’ll develop a portfolio of work that includes critical self-reflection on what has been learned from the experience. You’ll be required to evidence your experiences, the skills you’ve learned and your professional growth. 

In the final year, you’ll work towards delivering a final live event project while preparing for your future career in industry.

You’ll continue to develop a range of practical skills including crisis management and ethical and creative leadership. You’ll also enhance your specialist knowledge by applying advanced research skills. 


Crisis Management

In this module, you’ll develop your management capability to deal with complex crisis situations before being immersed in a live crisis scenario to test your skills. You’ll be assessed on your ability to respond to and evaluate this crisis scenario within a realistic multidisciplinary team situation. 

Festival Development

With sustainable practice, inclusivity and accessibility front of mind, you’ll explore a range of festival concepts that reflect your aspirations and showcase your industry knowledge and insights. 

Professional Development

Reflecting on your own professional development, you’ll build a portfolio that documents your skills and experience gained throughout this degree. Through this exercise, you’ll learn the value of using reflective practice to inform your own personal and professional development. 

Festival Management

This is your chance to put your festival management skills into practice, representing a cutting edge, industry-leading approach to professional sustainable practice, including inclusive and accessible festival design.  

Futures Research

In the form of a research project, you’ll address the important aspects of a topic of your choice. Supported by a research supervision team, you’ll have the opportunity to contribute to the theoretical and applied landscape within your field of interest. 


You’ll review a range of leadership models, styles and frameworks, building on your understanding of leadership practice and its impact on organisations. You’ll then complete a leadership self-assessment, engaging in a comprehensive reflection and development process. 

As part of our process of continuous improvement, we routinely review course content to ensure that all our students benefit from a high-quality and rewarding academic experience. As such, there may be some changes made to your course which are not immediately reflected in the content displayed on our website. Any students affected will be informed of any changes made directly.

Our partners

This course was launched and developed in partnership with the Eden project, home of the Eden Sessions and a pioneer in sustainable events. Throughout the course, you’ll learn from the people behind this legendary venue, have the opportunity to experience behind the scenes and organise your own events there.  

This Sustainable Festival Management degree is also accredited by A Greener Future and Attitude is Everything; two organisations championing sustainability and inclusivity in live events. 

Eden Sessions concert
Eden Sessions Concert

How you'll learn & be assessed

Complementing lectures, seminars and workshops, we champion opportunities for our students to learn in real world environments and through industry connections. You’ll have the opportunity to take part in field trips, work on live collaborative projects and learn from guest speakers – who’ll bring their own industry experience into your learning journey. 

At Falmouth, we use a 'digitally enhanced learning & teaching' approach. Your experience will always be predominantly in-person, including seminars, tutorials and studio teaching, with some, more targeted elements, being online either live (synchronous) or pre-recorded (asynchronous). You can read more here.

100% of your assessment will be coursework. 

Assessment methods

  • Practical assessments include crisis management simulation, digital and industry presentations, and the development of your own festival events 
  • Coursework assignments that reflect real world outputs, including a portfolio of promotional communications, a grant funding bid and project initiation document (PID) 
  • Two research projects will give you the opportunity to explore areas that you are passionate about 
  • Continuous assessment through visual, verbal and written assignments 


The Sustainable Festival Management course sits within Falmouth University’s Cornwall Business School. You'll have access to our dedicated facilities that are designed to replicate a modern workplace environment.

There are spaces for you to work independently or in groups and to take part in workshops and planning sessions. You can also access the course team who have an ‘open door’ policy.  

  • Lecture theatres  
  • Seminar rooms  
  • Group working base room  
  • Subject librarian  
  • Libraries housing a collection of books and electronic and journal resources  
  • IT suites and software packages  
  • Excellent media facilities for producing promotional material and audio-visual content  
  • Activity within the Eden Project, including visits and learning experiences 

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You'll learn from an experienced, dedicated and supportive course team who are passionate about enhancing sustainability in the festival industry.

Our lecturers have a broad range of specialist interests including food and hospitality events, wellbeing, arts and music events, inclusive and accessible design and crisis management. You’ll also get to connect with guest speakers who will bring their contemporary industry experience to the table. 

Some members of staff only teach on specific modules, and your course might not feature every staff member who teaches on the course.

Paul Russell

Course Leader - Sustainable Tourism Management and Sustainable Festival Management

Paul Russell started his career in the hospitality, tourism and events sectors after achieving under...

Paul Russell

Dr Donna Poade

Senior Lecturer in Experience Design (Tourism)

Donna is Senior Lecturer in Experience Design (Tourism) at Cornwall Business School and joined in Au...

Dr Donna Poade

Natalie Semley

Senior Lecturer in Sustainable Tourism Management

Growing up in a traditional seaside resort on the North coast of Cornwall, Natalie Semley has a deta...

Natalie Semley

Adrian Bossey

Head of Business & Experience Design

Adrian Bossey is Head of Subject at the Cornwall Business School, Falmouth University and a former a...

Adrian Bossey

Helen Worthington

Senior Lecturer, Experience Design, Cornwall Business School

Helen Worthington is a Senior Lecturer at Falmouth University in the Faculty of Business & Exper...

Helen Worthington
Sam Jones headshot

Sam Jones

Lecturer in Management

I am an educator, creative producer & music consultant based in Cornwall. I work internationally...

Sam Jones
Paul Russell

Got a question about this course?

If you want to know more about the course structure, our application requirements or what our graduates have gone on to achieve, our friendly course team is here to help.

Chat to Paul


As a Sustainable Festival Management graduate, you could work in the following sectors:

  • Festival and event management organisations 
  • Venue operators 
  • Marketing agencies 
  • Public agencies and local authorities 
  • The creative industries sector  
  • Tourist and event attractions and destinations  
  • The music and entertainment sectors  

The jobs market in the festival sector is also varied and offers opportunities to work in a range of roles including:  

  • Festival event manager  
  • Operations manager  
  • Digital marketing officer  
  • Social media manager  
  • Vendor  
  • Artist liaison  
  • Talent booker  
  • Volunteer coordinator  
  • Sponsorship manager  

You may also choose to progress to postgraduate study in events and related subjects. 

The professional and commercial skills taught on a Business, Marketing or Events degree can be applied to almost any sector, opening a world of possibilities for future careers.

What can you do with a Business, Marketing or Events degree?

How to apply

Ready to join us? There's still time to apply for September 2024 through Clearing

Apply through Clearing

Course route UCAS code
Sustainable Festival Management BA(Hons) three year degree N822
Sustainable Festival Management BA(Hons) with professional placement PY52

All applications are considered on their individual merit and we welcome applications from all subject backgrounds including science, technology, engineering, mathematics, the arts or humanities.

Course route Entry requirements
BA/BSc(Hons) three year degree 104 – 120 UCAS Tariff points
BA/BSc(Hons) four year degree with professional placement 104 – 120 UCAS Tariff points

Check the title of your course to see if it's a BA or BSc award. UCAS Tariff points will primarily be from Level 3 qualifications such as but not limited to A-levels, T Levels, a BTEC/UAL Extended Diploma or a Foundation Diploma.

Check how many points your qualifications are worth

For applicants whose first language is English we require you to have or be working towards GCSE English Language Grade 4 (C), or equivalent. 

If English is not your first language you will need to meet the same standard which is equivalent to the IELTS Academic 6.0 overall score, with at least 5.5 in Reading, Writing, Speaking and Listening. We accept a range of in country equivalencies and approved tests.  

If you need a student visa to study in the UK, you may need to take a recognised language test. You can read our English Language Requirements for more information.

For starting your studies in 2024

UK applications: 31 January 2024 (for equal consideration)

Applications after the 31 January will be considered on a first-come, first-served as long as there are places available. Apply for this course now.

International fee payers

International fee payers can apply throughout the year. But we recommend applying as early as possible, to make time for visa and travel arrangements.

Fees, costs & funding

Tuition fees

Annual tuition fee Student
£9,250 per year Full-time UK
£17,950 per year Full-time EU/international
£1,850 per professional placement year Full-Time UK and EU/international
Annual tuition fee Student
£9,250 per year Full-time UK
£17,950 per year Full-time EU/international
£1,850 per professional placement year Full-Time UK and EU/international

Tuition fees for September 2026 will be confirmed in summer 2025.

Tuition fees are set annually and are subject to review each year. The University may therefore raise tuition fees in the second or subsequent years of a course, in line with inflation and/or the maximum permitted by law or Government policy. Students will be notified of any changes as soon as possible. 

The figures above don't include accommodation and living costs

Typical course costs

One-off costs for course duration 

Personal laptop (if not already owned). You do not need to use any specialist software for this course so any reasonable laptop will be suitable. 

Optional study trips 

The Sustainable Festival Management course includes a number of organised industry visits and live industry projects – all of which are included within the course fees. You may be required to pay for your own food, drink and refreshments during visits, as well as funding any free time activities that you may choose to engage in. 

If you need to bring equipment or materials with you, these will be outlined in your Welcome Letter. 

Ask a student

What better way to find out about life at Falmouth University than by asking our current students?

From course details and academic support, to the social scene and settling in, our students are ready and available to answer any questions you might have. Simply set up your account, send them a question and they'll get back to you within 24 hours.

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