FESTudy - a European study of festivals


They were more than 300 participants at the Festudy colloquium  "Music festivals, a changing world", held in the Eurometropolis Lille-Kortrijk-Tournai on November 19-21! You can follow the activities linked to the study on the FESTudy website.  

The book Music festivals, a changing world. An international comparison is available on the website now and in bookstores soon !

Download the purchase order HERE


This European conference is the result of over three years of research and is co-directed by Lluis Bonet (researcher at the University of Barcelona), Michel Guérin (director of the Observatoire des politiques culturelles of the Wallonia-Brussels Federation) and Emmanuel Négrier (researcher at the CNRS - France).

Initiated by 9 European national festival organisations, under the umbrella of the EFA (European Festivals Association), with technical coordination provided by France Festivals, the French Federation of Music and Performing Arts Festivals, the Conference takes place in a critical context.

Indeed, whereas festivals have become a major arena for European cultural policies, Europe lacks basic shared knowledge of the political, cultural and artistic frameworks in which festivals are set up. The "Music Festivals, a Changing World" conference is a unique opportunity to present the results of this pioneering study, the first of its kind.


Despite a few long-standing pioneers, the festival is still a new idea in Europe. Its diversity (in terms of style, scope, public funding or cultural reach) has long been an obstacle to comparative analysis.

This work presents the first study undertaken using a single, unique method on a sample of nine national festivals (eight European countries and Quebec), which was subsequently extended to events from six other countries.

The comparison focuses on a total of 390 music festivals, representing a wide variety of genres, musical styles, scope and seasonal programmes. All major aspects are explored, from the purpose of the festivals to human resources and business models adopted.

The first part reviews this analytical journey through the world of festivals. The second part contains several chapters on different countries, enabling the impact of the cultural, economic and political setting in which these events are created and developed to be measured. Whereas artists themselves have long since gone beyond national borders, this twofold international comparison allows the differences between country-specific models to be transcended.

This book, which is also published in English, follows on from Michel de Maule’s two earlier publications: Les nouveaux territoires des festivals (2007) and Les Publics des festivals (2010).

Date of publication: November 2013

Language: French and English translation

Number of pages: approximately 300