Applications are now open for the South Asia Festivals Academy (Beginners Level). Participants in this accredited online ‘distance learning’ programme gain professional expertise to manage and run a festival.

The 10-week immersive skills development course is delivered online by experts from the UK and South Asia. The Academy comprises weekly workshops covering festival marketing, sustainability, human resources, programming and artistic development, budgeting, financing festivals, diversity and inclusion, risk management and logistics/project management of festivals.

South Asia Festival Academy courses are accredited according to the Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework which is Scotland’s national framework. The Beginners course is at SCQF Level 9 (equivalent level for Year 3 undergraduate degree in Scotland).

Who is the course open to?

South Asia Festivals (Beginners Level) is open to early career festival practitioners from Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka.

Applications will be accepted from entry-level and early-career professionals with experience of up to five years in festivals or cultural venues/events in South Asia.

Applications close Sunday 4 September 2022, 11.59pm IST.

About South Asia Festivals Academy

South Asia Festival Academy (Beginners Level) forms part of The South Asia Festival Academy, which is a unique partnership between British Council and Edinburgh Napier University. It aims to develop and strengthen the festivals sector across South Asia through capacity building.

Course date and fees

The South Asia Festival Academy (Beginners Level) course starts on 19th September 2022 and will take place over 10 weeks, each Monday from 3 to 6pm IST.

Course Fee: £150 

Who’s eligible to apply and will benefit from the course?

The course welcome all festivals including women led, LGBTQI focus and disability arts (audience, artists and festival managers). Festivals can be single artform, cross artform, or multi-disciplinary.

For the Beginners Course: 

  • Applicants run cultural events with ambitions to develop these in to a festival format
  • Applications by entry-level festival professionals (up to 5 years)
  • Applicants should be promising leaders/founders of festivals of any genre. 
  • Applicants should be promising managers/employees/ consultants/project managers working with existing festivals. 
  • Applicants’ backgrounds can range from artistic and curatorial to management, marketing, business development, fundraising etc


What are the course areas and modules?

  • Business Development: Key components of developing a successful business model and learning through the creation of a practical draft business plan. 
  • Governance Structures: Introduction to models of governance and different leadership and organisational cultures. 
  • Artistic Policy and Programming: Programming strategies and matrix, taking risks and ensuring excellence, commissioning and supporting new talent, building successful partnerships and networks. 
  • Operations and Financial Management: Building and managing teams, choosing a financial model, management accounts, cashflows, and project budgets. 
  • Audience Development and Engagement: Developing audience segmentation, communication strategy, and building engaged communities. 
  • Arts Festivals contexts in South Asia and the UK: Understanding artistic, geographic and historic influence on festivals


What are the learning outcomes?

  • Evaluate the meaning of experience and design examining how it is applied to festivals and events
  • Identify and discuss types, sources and implications of regulations applicable to the sustainable operation of festivals and events
  • Identify and appraise key operations structures and management functions and apply these to a range of festivals and events in a problem-solving context
  • Communicate and present findings of investigative activity into festivals and events operations in a structured format
  • Participants will be challenged in their knowledge and proficiency in festival management in a collaborative learning environment, imparting new skills in and approaches to business development and understand the environment during a crisis (crisis management) 
  • Participants will be receiving an accredited at Scottish Credit Qualifications Credit (SCQF) levels, in line with all credit-bearing courses and degree programmes provided and delivered by Scottish Universities post completion of the digital Festivals Academy
  • Participant will be leaving confident that they can apply the learning to support their festival strategies in their local contexts. 
  • Learning new ways to build EDI into digital products and services
  • Develop a national and international network and peer group

If you have any questions about the course, please contact –

For more information visit: South Asia Festival Academy - Beginner's Level (


External links