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October 10th 2022

Manchester Central and Mash Media partner up on sustainability research to shape the future of events

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Manchester Central, one of the UK’s leading events venues, has partnered with MASH Media to delve into the subject of sustainability for the events sector – understanding the current state of play, best practices, the challenges we’re all facing, and exploring some of the success stories we can all take inspiration from. Together, Manchester Central and MASH Media have produced a whitepaper, sharing findings from the research, that will help to shape our collective and individual sustainability journeys.

The research kicked off with a survey titled ‘Sustainable events: Play your part in shaping the future’ and included a range of social media polls and a roundtable discussion with a number of recognisable names from across the industry. The survey collected data from 150 respondents including event planners, venues and suppliers and consulted with a selection of experts from industry.

The report, believed to be the first of its kind for the events sector as a whole, makes recommendations as to how the industry can and should make sustainability core to activities.

The research suggests that, overall, sustainability is not only here to stay; it’s becoming more important and expected to become an even bigger part of our future decision making. That said, more than half of respondents believe the industry isn’t doing enough to be sustainable or effectively prioritising it, and only 48% believe their organisations are sustainable.

The key findings:

  • The biggest reported challenges for the events industry - which is worth more than £70bn to the UK’s economy - include costs, lack of clarity and training.
  • 96% of respondents said sustainability has become more important to them in recent years
  • 87% said that the government needs to introduce legislation. Some suggestions included tax breaks, industry legislation and benchmarking;
  • 94% believe sustainability will become a bigger part of their decision-making process in the next few years, yet, more than half of those surveyed don’t believe the industry as a whole is doing enough to be sustainable;
  • Only 26% of respondents have signed up to the Net Zero Events pledge so far;
  • Just 61% of organisations have a sustainability policy in place currently.

Shaun Hinds, CEO at Manchester Central says:

“There’s never been a more critical time to hone our efforts and collaboratively do all possible to address global issues and safeguard our future. That’s why we’ve partnered with Mash Media, to gain insights, share best practice and solutions, in the hope of inspiring change and accelerating sustainability across the industry.”

Jack Newey Group Portfolio Director at Conference News said:

“The whitepaper has really opened our eyes to the current state of the industry and how we view sustainability. It’s clear how many of us eventprofs see the importance of creating a much greener future for events, yet so little believe we are doing enough as an industry. Some really strong take-homes from the research, creating the perfect starting block to build on and start digging deeper into what more can now be done. Thank you to Manchester Central of joining us on this research journey!”

You can download the whitepaper here -


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