Event leverage: a systematic literature review and new research agenda

Nico Schulenkorf, Jon Welty Peachey, Guangzhou Chen, Anja Hergesell

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Research question: For the past 20 years, the concept of event leverage has underpinned a variety of academic research across different event settings and with diverse goals in mind. Despite the significant increase in event leverage publications as well as growing interest from event planners and policymakers, scholars have yet to synthesize academic contributions in this burgeoning field. Our systematic review addressed this issue and provides a new agenda for event leverage research. Research methods: We conducted a systematic review of event leverage literature that followed a well-established six-step process. Specifically, we identified and interrogated 92 relevant publications to determine key findings. Findings: We identified a growing trend of event leverage publications overall; a publication focus on (sport) business/management and tourism/hospitality journals; a predominance of mega- and large-scale event settings; a concentration on business/economic and social goals; a strong emphasis on empirical studies with qualitative research approaches; and a lack of research contributions from scholars in low-and middle-income countries. Implications: Based on our findings, we discuss practical and theoretical implications and conclude by proposing a future agenda for event leverage research that recommends an advancement of leverage conceptualizations; a diversification of research contexts and benefactors; a specification of focal outcomes related to a different event types and sizes; an expansion of perspectives including an acknowledgement of changes over time; and a clarification of terminology used in event leverage scholarship.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalEuropean Sport Management Quarterly
StateE-pub ahead of print - Dec 26 2022


  • Event leverage
  • event leveraging
  • literature review
  • research agenda
  • systematic review

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management
  • Strategy and Management


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