4 Ways to Leverage Technology for More Sustainable Events

October 22, 2019

Toby Heelis

Toby Heelis is the CEO of events management company Eventopedia. He has spent the last 20 years operating and marketing event venues. As cofounder of a PR platform in 2001 and an events-based private club in London, Toby developed his passion for technology and digital marketing. He has refined his experiences as marketing director at the leading large event venue in London, The Brewery.

The year 2020 is almost here, and one of the most urgent issues across all industries, including events, is sustainability. The events sector is gradually learning to take an integrated approach to organizing more earth-friendly events, taking into consideration the full range of relevant aspects, from waste reduction and recycling to resource use, transportation, choosing a sustainable venue and suppliers, and more.

One way to boost event sustainability is by using available technology, as well as being open to embracing upcoming technological changes. The events industry is already employing various forms of technology, such as using digital promotion strategies, that have the side effect of also reducing paper use.

However, with technology advancing, the possibilities are constantly increasing. Here are four forms of technology that are changing the events landscape, while also promoting sustainability:

Mobile Apps

Apps are everywhere, and their potential is virtually endless. They’re also one of the easiest types of technology to adopt, helping organizations not only make their events more sustainable, but also improve efficiency.

Many apps can help with the event planning process (creating task lists, tracking progress, setting deadlines etc.) while also replacing paper use. Apps can also be used for carpooling for attendees, reducing the negative impact of transportation. 

Event apps are a great way to also promote sustainability in a variety of ways:

  • Reducing paper by having all the event information digitally in one place that’s also easy for guests to access
  • Live streaming functionalities can increase the number of remote attendees, reducing transportation and overall carbon footprint
  • Using e-tickets/passes reduces paper use
  • Digital food menus can replace paper menus
  • Using badge scanner functionalities can replace business cards, and they could also include e-brochures, digital freebies and other info, further reducing paper.

Green Resource Technology

Venues are increasingly using technology that helps them use resources more responsibly. These can be used for simple solutions such as sensor water-saving taps or lighting systems, as well as more complex mechanisms for measuring and reducing resource consumption.

Solar electricity panels are a great way to leverage technology for green energy, reducing your carbon footprint. Other tech includes solar benches and charging stations, and even energy-generating pedestrian walkways, which turn footsteps into energy.

Data Analytics

In today’s digital age, data is everywhere, and data analytics software can help organizations leverage it to the full potential. Event apps, sensors, and tools that measure resource use and carbon footprint are all great ways to generate useful data for more eco-friendly events.

Real-time data can help organizers take a proactive approach with their current event, while historical data can help improve sustainability in the long run.


Virtual reality technology is constantly evolving, and we have yet to see the full potential it has for sustainable events. So far, it’s being leveraged to reduce transportation in various ways:

  • Boosting the popularity of hybrid meetings and enhancing virtual attendance capabilities
  • Enabling virtual product demonstrations with a simple VR headset, especially useful for large products/equipment that is complicated to transport to the event


Consumers are asking for eco-friendly practices and businesses are listening, so we are looking forward to seeing how further developments in technology will keep enhancing sustainability for the events sector.

Add new comment

Partner Voices
HERE, hosting responsible meetings and caring for our communities are top priorities. Through its 'Focused on What Matters: Embracing Humanity and Protecting the Planet' philosophy, MGM Resorts commits to creating a more sustainable future, while striving to make an impact in the lives of employees, guests, and the communities in which it operates. Water Stewardship Efforts MGM Resorts understands the importance of using water efficiently, especially in the desert destination of Las Vegas. Conserving water has always been part of the mission, but MGM Resorts has expanded its ambition into water stewardship. In 2022, MGM Resorts President and CEO Bill Hornbuckle signed the CEO Water Mandate—a UN Global Compact initiative mobilizing business leaders to advance water stewardship. MGM Resorts International was the first gaming company to take this important step. MGM Resorts replaced 200,000 square feet of real grass with drought-tolerant landscaping in Las Vegas. MGM Resorts pledges to reduce water withdrawal intensity by 33% by 2025 and by 35% by 2030. From 2007-2021, use of more than 5.6 billion gallons of water was avoided because of conservation efforts. Caring for One Another MGM Resorts’ Food Donations Program collects and preserves unserved food from conventions held at MGM Resorts properties, then safely donates to food insecure people in the community. Since the program’s launch in 2016, more than 3.7 million meals toward a 2025 goal of 5 million meals have been donated into the community. Donations include: Unserved perishable prepared foods from events Perishable unprepared food from MGM Resorts’ kitchens Nonperishable food items from minibars and warehouses The collaboration with Southern Nevada’s primary food bank, Three Square, has developed the infrastructure needed to safely collect, transport, and store food from MGM Resorts properties in Las Vegas, reducing food waste while serving the community. Fostering Diversity and Inclusion To MGM Resorts, a diverse and talented workforce is essential to success. By cultivating innovative strategies that consider multiple perspectives and viewpoints, the company creates an inclusive workplace culture that benefits its employees and community. MGM Resorts takes pride in being a welcoming home for veterans, individuals with disabilities, people from diverse backgrounds, LGBTQ+ community members, and more. This commitment to inclusion is reflected in the company's recruitment and hiring practices and its social responsibility initiatives. From the workplace to the community, MGM Resorts' commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion remains unwavering, and its efforts continue to create a more equitable and sustainable world for all. MGM Resorts understands its responsibility to contribute to the social and economic progress of the communities in which it operates. HERE, we embrace humanity.