Dr Eleni Theodoraki

Dr Eleni Theodoraki is an Associate Professor in Festival and Event Management specialising in sport management, organisational analysis and sustainability.
Dr Eleni Theodoraki, Associate Professor at the Business School



Associate Professor


The Business School




+44 (0) 131 455 4717


Eleni joined Edinburgh Napier University Business School in 2008 after twelve years at Loughborough University’s School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences. In her teaching, she draws on social and organisation theory to explore festival and event phenomena and to discuss the industry’s governance and professional practices. Eleni’s research is primarily in the areas of event governance, event impacts assessment, sustainability risks and governance and ownership of event risk. As expert group member, Eleni informs the sport policy development work of UNESCO. In the recent past, as commissioner, Eleni provided sustainability assurance to the Commission for a sustainable London 2012. 

Areas of expertise 

  • Festival and event management
  • Sport management
  • Organisational analysis
  • Sustainability

Research projects 

  • £156,500 ($235,394 USD), Qatar National Research Foundation funded research project on: Leveraging the 2022 Qatar World Football Cup for the promotion of green and active living. A multiple stakeholder evaluation of strategic options, 2013-2015. Principal Investigator.
  • £5,000, Scottish Enterprise funded research project on economic impacts from pre-games training related activities of national teams attending the London 2012 Olympic and the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games, 2011. Principal Investigator.
  • £4,000, Edinburgh Festival Theatres’ Trust funded research on strategic analysis for organisational growth with Mr. David Jarman, Edinburgh Napier University, 2009. Principal Investigator.
  • £2,500, East Thames Group funded desk based research on the Impacts of the Olympic Games on Social Housing, 2006. Principal Investigator.
  • £7,040, British Academy funded research project on the politics of sport development in a) IOC Olympic Solidarity and b) FIFA Goal programme with Dr. Vassil Girginov, University of Windsor, Canada, 2005. Principal Investigator.
  • £40,000, International Olympic Committee funded research project on women and leadership in the Olympic Movement with Loughborough based Professors Ian Henry and Anita White and Dr. Emma Rich, 2001.
  • £3,500, Loughborough University Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities funded research on organisational structures, management processes and institutional environments of African National Olympic Committees, 2000. Principal Investigator.
  • £5,000, Loughborough University School of Sport and Exercise Sciences funded research on organisational change in Chinese Sport organisations, 1999. Principal Investigator.
  • £30,000 Greek State Scholarship Foundation award of three year PhD Research Scholarship, 1991-1994. Principal Investigator. 

Courses taught 

Sport Event Tourism, International Festival and Event management, research methods, sport management and planning, Olympic studies.

PhD Supervision 

  • Collective memory and identity in commemoration of the fall of the Berlin Wall: Narratives of the 2009 and 2014 anniversary events 
  • Sustainable development? A critical realist analysis of the Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park’s decision to approve the Cononish goldmine application 
  • Citizen Participation within Mega Event Planning: The Case of the London 2012 Olympic Games. Completed in 2015.
  • Challenges and critical success factors in the adoption of sustainability footprints by Scottish SMEs. Completed in 2015.
  • Festival images - Defining the brand relationships between the Edinburgh Festival Fringe and its primary stakeholders. Completed in 2011.
  • The significance of hosting the 2008 Olympic Games for elite sport and sport for all in China. Completed in 2010.
  • The evolution of Modern Olympism and Olympic Values. Completed in 2005.
  • An analysis of the organisational configurations over the life cycle of the Sydney organising committee for the Olympic Games. Completed in 2003.
  • Olympic solidarity: global order and the diffusion of modern sport between 1961 to 1980. Completed in 2003.

Career history 

  • 2008-11 Director of Edinburgh Institute for Festival and Events Management.
  • 1996-08 Lecturer in sports management at School of Sport and Exercise Sciences, Loughborough University. Undergraduate Programme Leader.
  • 1994-96 Lecturer in sports management at De Montfort University. Programme leader for post-graduate Certificate in sport-leisure facility management by distance learning.


  • 1991-95 PhD studies at Loughborough University. Funded by the Greek State Scholarship Foundation. Research topic: Organisational Analysis of National Governing Bodies of Sport in Britain.
  • 1986-90 BEd degree in Physical Education and Sports Science, majoring in sports management and sports journalism. Aristotelion University, Greece

Professional memberships and honours 

  • Scottish Events and Festivals Association; European Sport Management Association; International Sociology of Sport Association; British Academy of Management; International Society of Sport Sciences in the Arab World; Association of Event Management Educators; British Arts and Festivals Association; International Olympic Academy Past-Participants Association.
  • 2016 Certificate of appreciation for outstanding contribution to the Qatar Olympic Academy. 
  • 2001 International Year of Volunteers International Olympic Committee (IOC) Diploma. Awarded by late IOC President Joan Antonio Samaranch for contribution to the development of sport and Olympism. 
Key publications
  • Theodoraki, E. (2011) Olympic Event Organization, Moscow: Olympus. ISBN 978-5-9693-0180-1
  • Theodoraki, E. (2010) Olympic Event Organization. New Delhi, Capital Publishing Company. ISBN: 9789380501680

Journal Papers

  • Michelini, L., Iasevoli, G., Theodoraki, E. (in press). Event venue satisfaction and its impact on sponsorship outcomes. Event Management, ISSN 1525-9951
  • Theodoraki, E. (2015). Evaluation and legacy of the European capitals of culture: event owner and event hosts’ perspectives. Economia della Cultura, XXIV n. 2. ISSN 11227885.
  • Jarman, D., Theodoraki, E., Hall, H., Ali-Knight, J. (2014). Social network analysis and festival cities: an exploration of concepts, literature and methods. International Journal of Event and Festival Management 5 (3) 311-322. ISSN 1758-2954.
  • Green, S. & Theodoraki, E. (2013). London 2012: Olympic Games’ related learning for the UK construction and events industries. Environmental Scientist. The Institution of Environmental Sciences, 21 (5), 28-31, ISSN: 0966 8411.
  • Jarman, D. and Theodoraki, E. (2012). Strategic analysis of the FCTT: a framework for research. Economia della Cultura, 4. 441-454. ISSN 11227885.
  • Amara, M. and Theodoraki, E. (2010). Transnational network formation through sports related regional development projects in the Arabian Peninsula. International Journal of Sport Policy, 2 (2), 135-158. ISSN 1940-6940.
  • Theodoraki, E. (2009). Organisational communication on the impacts of the Athens 2004 Olympic Games. Journal of Policy Research in Tourism, Leisure and Events, 1 (2), 141-155. ISSN 1940-7963.
  • Weiming, W. and Theodoraki, E. (2007). Mass sport policy development in the Olympic city: the case of Qingdao - host to the 2008 Sailing Regatta. The Journal of the Royal Society for the Promotion of Health, 127 (3) 125-132. ISSN 1466-4240


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