Features

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ICCA Heads to Sarawak for Association Impact Masterclass

At IBTM World in Barcelona, the architects of the ICCA Association Impact Masterclass confirmed that the educational is to take place in Kuching from 25-27th April. A 2-day immersive educational designed and delivered by GainingEdge and #Meet4Impact, the Masterclass is appropriately being unveiled in the ‘Legacy Capital’ of Malaysia and Borneo and hosted by its…

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ICC Sydney Elevates Corporate Ethics Through ‘RESPECT’ Initiative

From Boardroom: In the heart of Darling Harbour in Sydney, the International Convention Centre Sydney (ICC Sydney) stands out not only as a top-tier venue for international gatherings but also as a paragon of corporate responsibility and ethical conduct. Anchoring its operational philosophy firmly on the principle of respect, ICC Sydney has taken significant strides…

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Business Events Need Face Recognition

2024 will see the Business Events Industry exceed pre-pandemic levels of turnover and attendance as the demand for in-person business, professional, and policy engagement continues with alacrity. But as PCMA CEO, Sherrif Karamat famously reminded The Iceberg at the beginning of the recovery, “the time to buy an umbrella is when the sun shines.” So…

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Demand for Regional Engagement Drives Growth in AP

AIME (Asia-Pacific Incentives & Meetings Exhibition) held annually in Melbourne, Australia, is just around the corner. The event organiser, Matt Pearce, gave The Iceberg some insight into the sudden proliferation of events being staged in the region. China and India are both showing demand for outbound, Pearce confirmed, and subject to developing the connection between…

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Business Events Benefit from New Zealand’s Focus on Climate Action

From Conference & Meetings World: New Zealand is strengthening its reputation as it puts climate action, science and innovation at the top of its agenda. And it’s proving attractive for associations bringing their conferences to its capital city, Wellington. The country has a master plan to deliver a productive, sustainable and inclusive future through tackling…

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A Lesson in Collaboration and Trust

From AMI: Like a lot of international conferences run by American professional bodies, the biannual International C. elegans Conference was firmly planted in American soil. The international in its title referred to the audience profile, not where it was held. But that all changed last year when organisers, who had been mulling the possibility of…

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Demystifying Accessibility: Embracing Accessible Tourism to Empower...

From Simpleview: For the last decade, tourism organizations globally have been moving toward a more local, engaged, and citizen-focused model. As we set our sights on regenerative tourism, sustainability, accessibility, and a virtuous visitor economy, the question remains — how do we generate the engagement and alliances in our communities that are needed for success?…

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Green Backed: The Rise of Sustainable Subventions

From AMI: As associations become more focused on people and planet, Holly Patrick looks at how sustainable subvention initiatives are paving the way for greener gatherings… In the hyper-competitive international meetings market, “subventions and financial grants are super important,” says Elena Fis, sustainability officer at congress organiser Kenes group. “A lot of destinations have significant…

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GDS-Forum: Creating a Sustainable Vision of Destination Stewardship

In an eventful week, Valencia in Spain hosted the inaugural GDS-Forum organised by the Global Destination Sustainability Movement (GDS-Movement) which preceded the CityDNA Autumn Conference. The Forum departed from the meeting norms of pre-pandemic times to unveil the ‘unconference’ which Founder and CEO, Guy Bigwood, described as ‘a workshop on steroids’. It was undoubtedly different…

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CityDNA Autumn Conference: Building Blocks to Destination Positive

Europe’s leading destination management and development leaders from cities across Europe and beyond convened to explore the positive impacts derived from tourism (and events) exploring 4 key pillars, or building blocks, including Climate Action, Social Responsibility, the Circular Economy, and Societal Impact. The event echoed the mission of the European knowledge sharing alliance for cities…

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Meet the Visionary Canadians Attracting International Events

From Boardroom: When people think of Canada, they may picture pristine mountainous landscapes, the most famously friendly people in the world or perhaps a bottle of maple syrup. And while Canada is blessed with unparalleled natural beauty and an incredibly welcoming population – some of whom enjoy a drizzle of syrup here and there…

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Artificial Intelligence: A Viral Sensation or A Revolutionary Tool?

From Boardroom: As we strive towards a more sustainable future, the integration of AI into association operations can be a game-changer. It not only enhances the efficiency of organizations but also contributes significantly to building a more sustainable world. This article, part of our Building Back Better series, explores the ways in which AI benefits…

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News

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Christchurch and NZBE Launch Legacy Conference Study

From ChristchurchNZ: Business events provide a long-term impact far beyond the economic benefits that come from direct tourism spend. Business events has the potential to contribute to destination knowledge economies, drive industry innovation and bring a range of other benefits to host cities. The Conference Legacy Project is a three-year study powered by ChristchurchNZ and…

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RX Releases Sustainability Roadmap Detailing Path to Net Zero by 2040

From Trade Show Executive: As a founding member of the events industry’s Net Zero Carbon Events Pledge, which was launched in 2021, RX prioritizes and champions sustainability. Since 2018, it has successfully seen a 45% reduction in Scope 1 and Scope 2 location-based emissions. RX’s Sustainability Roadmap was guided by the Net Zero Carbon Events…

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GSMA’s Mobile World Congress Continues to Set Pace of Change

From Forbes, by Sarwant Singh: As a foresighting expert, I love going to large Mega shows like MWC and CES to witness the remarkable advancements that will shape our future. For me, this event holds a personal significance as it sets the stage for commercializing groundbreaking technologies in the coming years. At the MWC this…

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MCB Launches “First Peoples Engagement Guide”

From Meeting Spotlight: The Melbourne Convention Bureau (MCB) has announced the launch of its “First Peoples Engagement Guide,” a resource aimed at assisting event planners in creating culturally enriching business events and fostering positive social impact. The introductory guide is aimed at the business events industry and includes practical information about when and how to…

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The Biggest AIME in a Decade Opens in Melbourne

AIME Press Release: The Asia Pacific Incentives and Meetings Event (AIME) has today launched its 2024 event that will be the biggest AIME in a decade. Taking place at Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre (MCEC), AIME will host more than 600 buyers from around the world, welcome 3500 visitor and 570 exhibitors from various business…

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New ESG-Focused Event Sustainability Measurement Tool Launches

From M&IT: Event sustainability consultancy, event:decision, has launched Impact, a new tool to help planners achieve their sustainability goals. The new tool will allow event planners to assess, benchmark and certify events in a wide range of environmental, social and governance factors. Impact allows planners to submit responses relating to environmental, social and governance (ESG)…

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GIAF Springs Forward with Exclusive Early Offer

From Boardroom: The Geneva International Association Forum (GIAF), the leading European event for association executives, is moving to a new date in the spring, scheduled for March 25-26, 2024. This change aims to welcome more participants in a season of renewal and growth. GIAF announces a Super Early Bird Promotion, offering tickets at a special…

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A Win in the Fight Against Conference Scammers

From MEETINGSNET: The Federal Trade Commission has finalized a rule allowing it to take scammers to court—including those who fraudulently use conference names, logos, and mailing lists—and seek financial penalties. “Advocacy works!” said Tommy Goodwin, FASAE, CAE, PMP, CMP, vice president of the Exhibitions and Conferences Alliance, applauding both the Federal Trade Commission for finalizing…

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GainingEdge in Search for New CEO

From Conference & Meetings World: Global meetings industry consulting company GainingEdge and its CEO Jon Sivertson (pictured) have issued a joint announcement that Sivertson is to leave the company at the end of February 2024. The company’s senior partner, Mike Williams, is currently serving as acting CEO until a new permanent one can be appointed….

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BestCities Creates Connections with Purpose at 2024 Global Forum

BestCities Global Alliance welcomed international association representatives, trade media, industry thought leaders, and representatives from 13 BestCities destinations to its annual Global Forum, which took place January 18-21 in Melbourne, Australia with the support of Melbourne Convention Bureau (MCB). BestCities’ flagship event featured a strong education program with speakers including Mark McCrindle, social researcher and…

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VisitBritain Explores ‘Impact Beyond the Plenary’

From Conference News: VisitBritain, in partnership with MeetEngland, Meet in Wales, VisitScotland Business Events and the Association of British Professional Congress Organisers (ABPCO), explored the importance of ‘impact beyond the plenary’ at its first Association Conference at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre (EICC). The conference, which took place from 5-7 February 2024, brought together 80…

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Northstar Looks East as TMS Debuts in Singapore

The Iceberg’s global media partner, Northstar Travel Group, will convene meeting and event planners in Singapore as The Meetings Show expands its footprint into AsiaPac, from 17-18th April. Up to 80% of buyers will be drawn from the region while international buyers will make up the remainder of the hosted buyer event being held in…

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Case Studies

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BestCities Launch Legacy Case Study Series

From BestCities Global Alliance: The 23rd World Congress on Intelligent Transport Systems in Melbourne, 2016, showcased ITS Australia’s expertise and fostered government and community engagement in intelligent transportation. Prioritizing diversity and strategic networking, it achieved significant industry growth, policy influence, and youth engagement. This event exemplifies the lasting benefits of hosting international congresses for industry…

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International Forum on Quality and Safety in Healthcare 2022

From Göteborg & Co: Small steps towards a healthier lifestyle – a Gothenburg Way to Legacy project: The International Forum is one of the world’s leading health care meetings, inspiring healthcare leaders, practitioners and patients towards a better, safer and higher quality of care. Furthermore, the meeting has a strong population health prevention and promotion…

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Creating Socially Accountable Health Conferences

From Education for Health: Very little attention has been given to the social accountability of conferences, either in action or in scholarship, in particular, of scientific conferences. Concerns that have been raised include: (1) Local communities and regions suffer from ecological pressure caused by conferences, (2) There is limited value to the local community, (3)…

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ICC Sydney Showcases Best Case Studies of 2023

From ICC Sydney: Following a bumper year of business events, ICC Sydney is proud to share some of the best event case studies of 2023, featuring events across local, international, entertainment, corporate, exhibition and association sectors: Sydney WorldPride Human Rights Conference Discover how ICC Sydney approached its commitment to sustainability, diversity, equity and inclusion for…

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International Rehabilitation Forum 2023 is a Game Changer for Lviv

Every Convention can leave long-term positive changes for its host destination if thought is put into its planning, implementation and follow-up. Traditionally, destinations have sought only economic impacts regarding delegate numbers, hotel room nights, food and beverage spending by delgates, pre or post-touring heads and expenditure. In short, a convention is valued in dollars and…

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Event Legacies: Two Case Studies Reveal Path to Success

From Skift Meetings: The industry is full of event legacy success stories, but rarely do we have a chance to understand the inner workings of the start-to-finish planning process. MeetDenmark’s latest report Powering Meeting Legacies: New Insights for Associations & Host Communities shares precisely this level of insight. As Skift Meetings recently reported, the white…

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Research

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Destination Promotion: A Catalyst for Community Vitality

From Destinations International: DI’s landmark study, Destination Promotion: An Engine of Economic Development, confirmed that destinations with substantial visitor economies tend to outperform their peers, making destination promotion a true engine of economic development. Ten years later, we update and expand this research to demonstrate the far-reaching positive impacts of destination promotion, extending beyond the…

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ICCA Unveils 60-Year Report

ICCA, the global community and knowledge hub for the international association meetings industry, has unveiled a reflective and forward-looking report featuring video interviews with leaders from the business events and international association sectors, with animated graphics to illustrate how international business events have grown over the period. Beginning with David Goodger, managing director EMEA at…

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EMEA Region Survey Concludes: Time to Collaborate

From PCMA: Business events industry respondents to the latest PCMA EMEA Engagement Survey said that the No. 1 priority for their employers is collaboration and strategic partnerships. Meanwhile, opportunities to collaborate with their peers was often cited by event organizers as the one thing they would like to see at an industry event. This emphasis…

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In-Person Events Are More Popular Than Ever

From German Convention Bureau: MMGY Global released new findings from wave IV of its study “Portrait of European Meeting & Convention Travel”, for which event planners and event attendees from Europe were surveyed in late 2023. The study – supported by the GCB and other partners – underscores Germany’s top position among European meeting destinations,…

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Business Events in a Transformative Era

From German Convention Bureau: Megatrends such as New Work, demographic change, and Artificial Intelligence are on their way to becoming firmly established in our daily lives. In the context of business events, these and other trends have already driven enormous developments in certain fields. With its 2024 research focus, the innovation network Future Meeting Space…

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3rd UFI Industry Partners Benchmark Survey 2023

Developed by the UFI Industry Partners Working Group, the survey benchmarks and assesses the relationships between industry partners/suppliers and exhibition organisers/venues. It also identifies areas for improvement with regard to collaboration. For the 3rd survey, around 190 companies contributed to the project, the majority of whom are from Europe and the Asia-Pacific region. Some key…

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Opinions

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Martin Sirk and the Crystal Ball

If associations don’t adapt, then they’ll be at the mercy of competitive forces claims Martin Sirk speaking from the IBTM World Association Leaders Forum hosted by the European Society of Association Executives (ESAE). The intellectual source-code to The Iceberg and owner of Sirk Serendipity is the international advisor to the Global Association Hubs Partnership (GAHP)…

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14 Conversations Dominating Association Strategic Planning in 2024

From SMS, by Belinda Moore: An “association” happens when a group of people come together to collectively advance a common purpose. We have expectations around associations in their present form because that’s the world we’ve grown up in. But what we see now is just one chapter in a long story of collective endeavour. Over…

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Mark Nevins: What CEOs are Worrying About in 2024

From Forbes: Earlier this month, I had the rare opportunity to spend two days in Amsterdam talking and working with 120 CEOs from 35 different countries on five continents. What brought me to the Netherlands was the invitation-only UFI Global CEO Summit. Founded in 1925 in Europe, UFI is the global association for the exhibition…

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Glasgow Exemplifies how Cities can Embrace Sustainability

From Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers: Glasgow, also known as the “Dear Green Place” or “Glaschu” in Old Scots, has evolved into a hotbed of innovation, embracing sustainability as a core tenet of its urban development. Gavin Slater, Glasgow’s Head of Sustainability, and Aileen Crawford, Glasgow’s Head of the Glasgow Convention Bureau, provide insights…

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What can AI do for my association TODAY?

From SMS, by Belinda Moore: In case you missed it, registrations are open for the Associations Reimagined: AI & the Digital Frontier conference running in March. Given the acceleration of AI adoption by associations and their members, we encourage you to attend this important event. AI is not some complicated tech that’s only for big…

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New UFI Director: Eventprofs ‘Bullish’ Despite Global Crises

From ExpoPlatform: Martha Donato, regional director for North America, pointed to the upcoming “volatile” US election as an example before claiming “the show will go on”. She spoke to ExpoPlatform after taking on the position for the recently established chapter in the leading association for the exhibition industry. Martha, who is also president of MAD…

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Letter From the UFI President: February Edition

Dear colleagues, dear friends, I am writing these lines as I am leaving the beautiful city of Amsterdam, where I spent a few days both with the UFI leadership for our first major meetings of the year and of course for this year’s Global CEO Summit. For me, this week confirmed two beliefs that I…

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Karamat: “As an industry, we must think bigger”

From Trade Show Executive: The Professional Convention Management Association (PCMA) has ambitious plans to grow in the coming years, with PCMA and Corporate Event Marketing Association (CEMA) President and CEO Sherrif Karamat, CAE, taking the organization to great heights — both in membership and new initiatives. Karamat highlighted the association’s evolution and outlined next steps…

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ASSOCIATIONWORLD Founder Shares Sobering Forecast for Ukraine Recovery

The UNBROKEN Emergency Summit held in October 2023 attracted some leading minds from the association, charity, and consulting sectors as Lviv shared insights to the medical needs of the country. A visit to the UNBROKEN Rehabilitation Centre included to the facility’s psychological rehabilitation unit where the extent of the trauma was shared by its leading…

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Solaris Pours Scorn on Tech Sceptics

Four years to the day have passed since the beginning of the boom and bust of virtual event technologies and the beginning of the bust and boom of in-person events. Remember when investors went crazy for event tech stocks and the trade media held countless webinars using virtual technologies confirming that business and professional events…

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DEI Put in the ICCA Spotlight for 2024 and Beyond

By Senthil Gopinath: At ICCA we talk continuously about Sustainability, DEI, Legacy, and Innovation. These pillars inspire our interaction with our members and form the basis of much of the discussions we have with our associations. They provide the bedrock of work undertaken with external agencies and cross-organisational bodies, including The GDS-Movement, the Net Zero…

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Education

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5 March 2024

ICCASkills | CICS Course, Online

ICCASkills Certified International Convention Specialist (CICS) Course | This course is designed for early and mid-level professionals, or young graduates wanting to gain hands-on knowledge about the industry and become a specialist in the field. No minimum experience required. Two two-hour online sessions take place on Tuesdays and Thursday weekly for 8 weeks. We recommend…

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6 March 2024

ICCASkills | CICE Course, Online

Certified International Convention Executive (CICE) Course | This course is designed for higher-level executives to learn about new strategies and business models to elevate the level of the industry for meeting suppliers. Two two-hour online sessions take place on Mondays and Wednesdays weekly for 10 weeks. We recommend learners studying 1 hour per chapter prior…

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7 March 2024

Certificate in Regenerative Destination Management, Online

In this course, you will be taken on a 4-month journey to explore and develop a new mindset leveraging the latest in regenerative systems thinking. You will investigate and learn about new regenerative business models, destination stewardship approaches and stakeholder engagement methodologies that enable DMOs to catalyse investment, generate jobs, develop knowledge, equitably distribute prosperity,…

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11 March 2024

UFI-Exhibition Management School (March 2024), Online

The industry education programme for exhibition organisers. The curriculum was developed jointly with the UFI community, making it a programme designed by exhibition organisers for exhibition organisers. The UFI-EMS is part of the UFI Certified Professional designation and awards 20 foundation credits.

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21 April 2024

AIPC Academy 2024, Brussels, Belgium

The AIPC Academy is the only comprehensive professional development program specifically serving the needs of international convention centre managers! Designed to address the critical need for centres to maintain fully qualified staff in a highly competitive industry, the AIPC Academy provides a targeted, cost effective form of training and development along with the means to…

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13 May 2024

IMEX Frankfurt | Free Specialist Education

At IMEX you can enjoy expert education, explore the latest event trends and experience your most productive days of the year. Whether you’re an events newbie or a pro (or anything in between), IMEX 2024 is exactly where you need to be. And as an added bonus – attendance is completely free.

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10 June 2024

ICCASkills | CICS Course, Luxembourg

ICCASkills Certified International Convention Specialist (CICS) Course | Unlock your potential and elevate your career. This course is designed for early and mid-level professionals, or young graduates wanting to gain hands-on knowledge about the industry and become a specialist in the field. No minimum experience required. Gain insights and knowledge on all aspects of the…

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24 June 2024

UFI-Exhibition Management School (Jun-Jul 2024), Online

UFI and MBB-Consulting Group (MBB) are working to provide this industry education programme for exhibition organisers: the UFI-Exhibition Management School (UFI-EMS). The curriculum was developed jointly with the UFI community, making it a programme designed by exhibition organisers for exhibition organisers. Target Group: Mid to Senior representatives from Exhibition Organising Companies; Language: English; Format: Online…

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How to Include Sustainability Into Conference Planning

Discover how Singapore, as a premiere business event destination, can help you organize impactful conferences. In this special Knowledge Capital Boardroom MiniCourse, Carrie Kwik, Executive Director Europe, Singapore Exhibition and Convention Bureau, explains what makes Singapore so special when it comes to organizing high-quality association events that will have long-lasting legacies both for your organization…

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Impact Strategy and Measurement Masterclass, Online

Currently, only a small number of destinations have clearly defined legacy and impact strategies and use outcome and impact indicators to monitor their non-financial performance. Go to the next level of performance: learn the latest social impact theories and approaches to enable you to develop a robust impact strategy and implement measurement processes to monitor…

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Northstar Learning Academy, Online

On-demand education from experienced industry professionals: This series of lessons can be reviewed at your own pace, on-demand, saving your progress as you go. At the end, you will take a quiz on what you’ve learned to receive a certificate of completion for CMP credits.

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Destinations International | PDM Certificate Program, Online

The Professional in Destination Management (PDM) certificate program provides those new to the destination organization side of the industry (less than one year of experience) with cutting-edge education, offering entry-level personnel the critical skills and knowledge necessary to start their careers in the travel and tourism industry. The updated PDM certificate program is now online, available…

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Events

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8 April 2024

Destinations Exchange Europe 2024, London, UK

Destinations Exchange Europe is ETOA and CityDNA’s B2B event. It will take place over two days providing a great mix of commercially focused meetings, knowledge sessions, and opportunities to discuss product development and operational issues. In today’s rapidly evolving travel landscape, it is more important than ever for industry professionals to come together to share…

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9 April 2024

Business Events Industry Week, Washington DC, USA

Business Events Industry Week is a curated, multi-day experience focused on advancing the role of the global business events community in solving the economic and social transformational challenges of our audiences. The current environment has given us permission to experiment even more, as our members, customers and audiences are looking for new solutions to complex…

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9 April 2024

Convention Sales & Services Summit, Washington DC, USA

The Convention Sales & Services Summit is a cross-functional gathering of sales and services professionals dedicated to helping clients plan and execute successful meetings and events. Topics include the impacts of a shifting workforce, technological disruption, the new role of the sales and services team, overcoming destination concerns of safety, political climates and human rights,…

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15 April 2024

UFI MEA Conference 2024, Rwanda, Africa

Held annually, the UFI MEA Conference is the most important annual gathering of exhibition industry leaders in the region. It is attended by senior representatives from government entities, convention bureaus, tourism boards, venues, and event organisers, in addition to economists, media and industry experts, from across the world. The conference will feature panel sessions and…

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15 April 2024

The Business of Events, Marina Bay Sands, Singapore

The Business of Events is where you will meet and join a like-minded community of relentless innovators and trailblazers who thrive on creating meaningful human connections and leverage events masterfully to drive business growth and social change. We will explore new thinking and research on changing consumer behaviours; delve into the art and science of…

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17 April 2024

The Meetings Show Asia Pacific, Singapore

The Meetings Show unveils a new and exciting event, taking place in a destination known for its corporate hospitality, Singapore, showcasing the best of Asia Pacific. With multiple award-winning innovative event spaces, Singapore is one of the leading destinations for MICE globally, and winners of Best MICE Destination (Asia) at the M&C Asia Stella Awards…

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17 April 2024

EU Dialogue: Driving Positive Change in the Meetings Industry

Join us for this event and be part of the dialogue between the Meetings Industry and European policymakers to achieve a positive impact for society and destinations. The EU Dialogue offers the opportunity to highlight the key roles, impacts and challenges of the Meetings Industry in Europe and debate about the changes and transition that…

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21 April 2024

Small & Boutique Meetings – Spring 2024, Montgomery, Texas

Small & Boutique Meetings — Northstar’s premiere hosted-buyer event designed specifically for small and boutique-sized meetings — bringing together highly-qualified meeting buyers with destinations, hotels, DMCs and other suppliers ready to welcome smaller events. Attendees participate in one-on-one pre-scheduled appointments, gain industry insights from our guest speakers and network with this exclusive group. Learn from,…

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24 April 2024

CityDNA International Conference & General Assembly 2024, Bologna...

We are so excited to work with Bologna to welcome you in this wonderful Italian city and can’t wait to discover its many wonders together. Its favorable location, affordability, the quality of its accommodation and conference facilities and the variety and flair of its social life are just some of the reasons why Bologna is…

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28 April 2024

Incentive Live, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA

Incentive Live offers a compelling agenda that makes this event a must-attend for industry professionals. In addition to one-on-one appointments with top incentive destinations, hotels/resorts, cruise lines, DMCs, DMOs, merchandise and technology providers, gift cards, and tourism offices, Incentive Live presents leading industry experts providing the latest perspective on industry trends and best practices that…

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12 May 2024

AIPC Sales and Marketing Summit, Frankfurt, Germany

For each of the past 18 years, the AIPC Sales and Marketing Summit has proven to be the perfect kick-off for member participation in IMEX and all the client and industry interactions it entails. Summit participants have the opportunity to compare notes on current issues, consider the latest industry trends and hear from representatives of…

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13 May 2024

CVB Café 2024, Frankfurt, Germany

At the occasion of IMEX Frankfurt, the CityDNA Meetings Industry Knowledge Group would like to invite you and your colleagues from the Convention Bureau to attend a session specifically curated to exchange and discuss current challenges amongst peers, before a networking reception. This CVB Café will take place on Monday, May 13, 2024 in Frankfurt.

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Ambassadors

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Heike Mahmoud

Chief Operating Officer, CCH - Congress Center Hamburg

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Heike Mahmoud has been Chief Operating Officer (COO) of CCH – Congress Center Hamburg since March 1st, 2018. As COO and a fully authorized officer, the business administration professional is also a member of the Executive Board of Hamburg Messe und Congress. The new CCH was officially opened by the First Mayor of the Free…

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Tommy Goodwin

Vice President, Exhibitions & Conferences Alliance

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Tommy Goodwin is Vice President for the Exhibitions & Conferences Alliance (ECA), a newly-formed association dedicated to the recovery and advancement of the business events industry. In this role, he leads ECA’s advocacy and member engagement work on behalf the interconnected ecosystem of exhibitors, show and event organizers, suppliers, venues, and destinations that comprise the…

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Lyn Lewis-Smith

Chief Executive Officer, Business Events Sydney

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Lyn Lewis-Smith is CEO of BESydney and leads a global team of professionals spanning Europe, North America and Asia who are charged with securing global meetings of strategic, economic and social benefit to Sydney, Australia. The organisation works across sectors which include infrastructure, technology, professional services, advanced manufacturing, education and health. Lyn has led transformation…

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Remi Deve

Chief Editor, Boardroom

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A specialized journalist in the association management field, Remi has been active in the meetings industry for more than 15 years. Together with Cecile Koch, he launched Boardroom in 2017, a niche publication specialized in association management and events. Boardroom covers a wide spectrum of issues of interest to associations based globally and is specifically targeting association…

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Anna Look

Founder, Look Ahead Consulting

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Anna is a business event and tourism professional with European and Canadian expertise. She studied for her career at the University of Brighton in the UK and subsequently worked for international tour operators Thomas Cook and Cosmosair group before emigrating to Canada in 2005. British Columbia was her home for the first eight years, honing…

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Nigel Brown, CICS

Director, Marketing & Partnerships, BestCities Global Alliance

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Nigel started his career at the head office of the International Congress & Convention Association (ICCA) in Amsterdam. He was part of the event organizing team of the association and served 7 years organizing a host of events on all continents. During his tenure he gained extensive project management skills and was responsible for implementing…

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Natalie O’Brien AM

Chief Executive, Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre (MCEC)

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Natalie O’Brien AM is Chief Executive of Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre (MCEC), where she is responsible for the strategic direction of the business. She also has oversight of planning and future management of the new Geelong Convention and Exhibition Centre (GCEC) opening in 2026. Natalie is a former CEO of Food + Wine Victoria,…

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Senthil Gopinath

Chief Executive Officer, ICCA

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Senthil Gopinath has over 20 years’ experience in the meetings, association and leisure industry. He has held a wide range of positions, including CEO of Sri Lanka Convention Bureau, and Vice President of Kuoni. In 2006 Senthil moved to Dubai to work for Congress Solutions International, the Professional Congress Organiser (PCO) arm of Emirates Group….

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Amelia Roziman

Chief Executive Officer, BESarawak

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Amelia is a pioneer of BESarawak with over 21 years of branding, marketing and PR experience whose career in the sector began as a sales coordinator. Within 12 years, she helms the organisation as a CEO. Coming from the indigenous Bidayuh tribe of Sarawak, she is passionate about developing her homeland and providing opportunities for…

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Ray Bloom

Chairman, IMEX Group

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Ray Bloom is the chairman and founder of the IMEX Group, which organises worldwide exhibitions for the incentive travel, meetings and events industry in Europe and the USA. IMEX in Frankfurt takes place at Messe Frankfurt, Germany, every spring; while IMEX America takes place at the Las Vegas Sands Expo each autumn. Bloom is also…

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Aileen Crawford

Head of Tourism and Conventions, Glasgow Convention Bureau

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Aileen has worked in the meetings industry for over 20 years, initially in venue sales for Glasgow Museums, then in a variety of roles within the Conventions team at the Tourist Board, Glasgow City Marketing Bureau and is currently the Head of Tourism and Conventions at Glasgow Convention Bureau, Glasgow Life. The Glasgow Convention Bureau…

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Alexander Alles

Executive Director, Joint Meetings Industry Council (JMIC)

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Alex Alles joined JMIC Joint Meetings Industry Council in August 2022. There he is responsible for the overall operations of the association as well as the project office of the Net Zero Carbon Events. NZCE is an industry-wide initiative aiming to help stakeholders of the meetings and events sectors to decarbonise. Before joining JMIC, Alex…

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