Sustainability isn’t a bandwagon, it’s a train that’s leaving the station #eventprofs need to get on board, or get left behind!
Remember how things were shifting in late 2021?
As in-person gatherings began to return, it became critical for event organisers, digital platforms, and venues to move from merely talking about sustainability as their top focus to actually implementing sustainable practices. Many have started this transition to some degree.
Sustainability is not ‘just’ an ethical choice; it’s a business imperative. Clients and attendees are increasingly discerning in their selection of events, looking for those that demonstrate a commitment to environmental and social responsibility. Taking sustainability seriously can be a USP, setting your event apart from the many others that have yet to adopt practices.
New advances in tech are helping to make events more sustainable much more easily. From virtual and hybrid event options that reduce travel-related emissions to smart waste solutions, embracing the latest tech solutions can significantly mitigate an event’s environmental footprint. Ignoring tech advancements is not only a missed opportunity for innovation but also risks rendering your events obsolete. The market is rapidly-shifting and sustainability is now seen as a key indicator of quality and responsibility.
Finally, cross-sector collaboration can’t be underestimated in driving the agenda forward. Industry associations, government bodies, and even competitors can offer valuable insights and resources for enhancing practices and solutions. Attending or organising events and forums (below) that focus on sharing best practices in sustainability can amplify collective impact, creating a more substantial change than any single entity could achieve on its own.
Room for improvement
There’s significant room for improvement in our industry. Notably, key players in the event sustainability landscape likely only engage with a fraction—perhaps less than 1%—of the entire event market. This implies that a large percentage of events are neither assessed for their environmental impact nor reported on.
Legislation is fortunately evolving.
Kudos to Prestige Events for spearheading the focus on sustainability with their first Sustainable Event Show at the Barbican in November 2021. event:decision contributed by measuring and reporting on the event; and by collating topics and panelists supporting the event’s subject matter and diverse range of speakers.
A variety of sustainable events and shows have been launched since then, and the current season is just kicking off.
Recent data from EY reveals that “36% of companies are well-progressed in their ESG commitments,” indicating an impending uptick in transparent reporting against ESG goals, stimulating business innovation, and bolstering supply chain sustainability.
For actionable insights, stay tuned with Event:decision in the upcoming months and consider attending:
There’s likely room for you at any of these events; make it a point to attend at least one.
The saying holds true: if you don’t make sustainability a priority, your competitors will.
So, it’s time to get on board; this movement is headed in only one direction—forward!