BRC Census Population Analysis, 2013-2019

Perspectives on Burning Man

Burning Man Attendance, Self-Identification as a "Burner," Burning Man Year-Round, and Funding Priorities

Burning Man Attendance

Reasons for Going to Black Rock City This Year*

Error bars indicate the upper and lower bounds of the 95% confidence intervals.

* Participants selected up to three options. Question options were changed in 2019 and are not comaprable to previous years.

** The exact wording of the answer option in the online survey was, "To be with friends or like-minded people / feel a sense of belonging."

*** The exact wording of the answer option in the online survey was, "To satisfy my curiosity / check it off my 'bucket list.'"

A Primary Reason   A Secondary Reason  
Percent MoE +/- %   Percent MoE +/- %
To Feel a Sense of Belonging** 35.0 1.3   60.6 1.4
To See/Experience the Art 23.5 1.2   21.4 1.1
To Play and Experience Freedom 19.4 1.1   76.9 1.2
To Express Myself 39.9 1.4   33.3 1.3
To Escape the World for a Time 21.9 1.1   70.3 1.3
To Experience Gifting and Decommodification 20.6 1.1   4.0 0.6
To Rely on Myself and Practice Useful Skills 30.1 1.3   48.4 1.4
To Meet People Who Are Different from Me 34.8 1.3   44.8 1.4
To Grow or Connect Spiritually 38.7 1.4   38.2 1.4
To Create/Work on a Project 37.1 1.3   36.5 1.3
To Perform and Practice Artistic Skills 22.9 1.2   13.9 1.0
To Satisfy My Curiosity*** 12.2 1.0   12.9 1.0
To Consume Intoxicants 28.1 1.2   38.8 1.4
To Satisfy Someone Else’s Wish That I Be There 8.0 0.8   3.9 0.5

Burning Man Attendance

Evaluation of Intent to Return to Black Rock City in the Future

Error bars indicate the upper and lower bounds of the 95% confidence intervals.

2013   2014   2015   2016   2017   2018   2019
Percent MoE +/- %   Percent MoE +/- %   Percent MoE +/- %   Percent MoE +/- %   Percent MoE +/- %   Percent MoE +/- %   Percent MoE +/- %
Absolutely 76.1 0.8   78.2 1.0   75.3 1.0   76.8 1.2   75.7 1.4   78.9 1.2   77.8 1.2
Probably 17.4 0.8   15.8 0.8   18.4 1.0   17.6 1.2   17.6 1.2   17.2 1.0   16.5 1.0
Not Sure 4.9 0.4   4.6 0.4   4.8 0.6   3.8 0.6   4.6 0.6   3.0 0.4   4.3 0.6
Probably Not 1.4 0.2   1.0 0.2   1.3 0.2   1.5 0.4   1.6 0.4   0.8 0.2   1.1 0.2
Absolutely Not 0.2 0.0   0.3 0.2   0.2 0.0   0.4 0.2   0.5 0.2   0.2 0.2   0.3 0.2

Self-Identification as a “Burner”

Self-Identification as a “Burner”

Error bars indicate the upper and lower bounds of the 95% confidence intervals.

2016   2017   2018   2019
Percent MoE +/- %   Percent MoE +/- %   Percent MoE +/- %   Percent MoE +/- %
No 4.1 0.6   3.8 0.4   3.8 0.4   3.7 0.4
Sort Of 23.4 1.2   22.7 1.0   21.4 1.0   19.3 1.0
Yes 72.5 1.2   73.5 1.2   74.7 1.0   77.0 1.0

Burning Man Year-Round

Attendance at Regional Events/Mixers/Gatherings

Error bars indicate the upper and lower bounds of the 95% confidence intervals.

2013   2014   2015   2016   2017   2018   2019
Percent MoE +/- %   Percent MoE +/- %   Percent MoE +/- %   Percent MoE +/- %   Percent MoE +/- %   Percent MoE +/- %   Percent MoE +/- %
No 35.5 1.0   32.2 1.0   35.3 1.0   38.5 1.4   39.0 1.2   37.0 1.2   34.8 1.2
Yes, at Least One 35.3 1.0   37.0 1.0   32.9 1.0   32.3 1.2   29.8 1.0   31.5 1.0   32.1 1.2
No, but on Email List 16.9 0.8   16.4 0.8   19.8 0.8   18.2 1.0   17.4 0.8   18.0 1.0   18.6 1.0
Yes, and Volunteered 12.4 0.6   14.4 0.8   12.0 0.8   11.1 0.8   13.7 0.8   13.6 0.8   14.5 0.8

Burning Man Year-Round

Regional Burning Man Event Involvement*

Error bars indicate the upper and lower bounds of the 95% confidence intervals.

* Responses reported here are from participants who indicated having volunteered with at least one regional Burning Man event/gathering/mixer. Participants selected all option(s) that applied.

2015   2016   2017   2018   2019
Percent MoE +/- %   Percent MoE +/- %   Percent MoE +/- %   Percent MoE +/- %   Percent MoE +/- %
Theme Camp 6.5 0.6   5.9 0.6   7.7 0.6   7.6 0.6   8.2 0.6
Production 6.1 0.6   5.6 0.6   6.9 0.6   6.5 0.6   5.4 0.6
Art Project 5.1 0.4   4.0 0.4   5.3 0.4   5.3 0.6   5.2 0.6
Performance 2.9 0.4   2.4 0.4   3.1 0.4   2.7 0.4   2.4 0.4
Other 3.4 0.4   4.0 0.6   5.0 0.4   4.4 0.4   1.1 0.2
Vendor 0.1 0.0   0.3 0.2   0.2 0.2   0.2 0.0   0.1 0.0

Burning Man Year-Round

Evaluation of Whether the Burning Man Organization Should Be Involved in Facilitating and Producing Year-Round Activities

Error bars indicate the upper and lower bounds of the 95% confidence intervals.

2015   2016   2017   2018   2019
Percent MoE +/- %   Percent MoE +/- %   Percent MoE +/- %   Percent MoE +/- %   Percent MoE +/- %
Yes 51.6 1.2   64.4 1.4   62.0 1.2   61.3 1.2   63.3 1.2
No 19.3 1.0   14.8 1.0   15.9 1.0   16.6 1.0   15.9 1.0
Don’t Care 29.1 1.0   20.8 1.2   22.1 1.0   22.1 1.0   20.8 1.0

Burning Man Year-Round

Familiarity with Programs and Affiliates of the Nonprofit Burning Man Program

Error bars indicate the upper and lower bounds of the 95% confidence intervals.

* "Black Rock Labs" was listed in as "Black Rock Solar" in the 2015-17 online surveys.

** "Fly Ranch Project" was provided as an option in 2018 and 2019. "Burning Man Fellows Program" was an option only in the 2018 online survey.

2015   2016   2017   2018   2019
Percent MoE +/- %   Percent MoE +/- %   Percent MoE +/- %   Percent MoE +/- %   Percent MoE +/- %
Burners Without Borders
Not Familiar 13.4 0.8   15.0 1.0   13.4 0.8   11.8 0.8   11.6 0.8
Heard of It 37.5 1.2   38.8 1.4   32.5 1.2   35.6 1.2   32.6 1.2
Familiar with It 49.0 1.2   46.3 1.4   54.0 1.2   52.6 1.2   55.7 1.2
Burning Man Arts
Not Familiar 25.5 1.0   30.0 1.4   29.9 1.2   25.2 1.0   24.8 1.0
Heard of It 33.8 1.0   33.3 1.4   32.0 1.0   33.7 1.2   31.8 1.2
Familiar with It 40.7 1.2   36.7 1.4   38.1 1.2   41.1 1.2   43.4 1.2
Burning Man Regional Network
Not Familiar 22.7 1.0   25.5 1.2   28.3 1.0   28.5 1.2   26.2 1.0
Heard of It 35.0 1.2   36.9 1.4   34.9 1.2   35.3 1.2   33.3 1.2
Familiar with It 42.4 1.2   37.6 1.4   36.8 1.2   36.2 1.2   40.5 1.2
Fly Ranch Project**
Not Familiar NA NA   NA NA   NA NA   41.9 1.2   36.7 1.2
Heard of It NA NA   NA NA   NA NA   27.0 1.0   27.1 1.0
Familiar with It NA NA   NA NA   NA NA   31.1 1.0   36.2 1.2
Black Rock Labs*
Not Familiar 39.0 1.2   47.8 1.4   52.1 1.2   57.1 1.2   52.4 1.2
Heard of It 26.1 1.0   24.5 1.2   21.8 1.0   23.7 1.0   25.1 1.0
Familiar with It 35.0 1.2   27.7 1.2   26.2 1.0   19.2 1.0   22.5 1.0
Burning Man Fellows Program**
Not Familiar NA NA   NA NA   NA NA   81.7 1.0   NA NA
Heard of It NA NA   NA NA   NA NA   14.0 0.8   NA NA
Familiar with It NA NA   NA NA   NA NA   4.3 0.4   NA NA

Funding Priorities

If You Were Given $1,000 to Donate to Programs of the Burning Man Project, How Would You Want it to be Distributed*?

Error bars indicate the upper and lower bounds of the 95% confidence intervals.

* Participants were asked to provide a dollar amount for each option provided, up to $1,000 total across all options.

2019   2018
Total (USD) MoE +/- %   Total (USD) MoE +/- %
Disaster relief and local community building initiatives $167.09 $5.82   $166.00 $5.66
BRC art $164.25 $5.37   $159.46 $5.00
BRC planning and infrastructure $152.77 $5.31   $149.18 $5.21
BRC low income ticket program $141.96 $4.94   $137.78 $5.00
Placing large interactive art in public places abroad $78.25 $3.47   $79.91 $3.53
Supporting the Burning Man regional network in my local community $67.11 $3.61   $64.84 $3.35
BRC multimedia (audio, photo, video) projects $61.55 $3.43   $59.18 $3.51
Other $34.24 $3.63   $49.17 $4.65

BRC Census has included similar questions in past years’ online survey, but the question was revised in 2018 so past responses are not directly comparable.


Next: Life in BRC: Experiences in Black Rock City, Community as Family, and Money Handling