The 58th ICCA Congress in Houston.

Any major global gathering of the meetings industry always makes headlines, and the recent 58th ICCA Congress in Houston was no exception.

As you can read in News this issue of Business Events World and also on The Iceberg, the International Congress and Convention Association’s meeting was the largest it has ever held in North America. At the Iceberg partner’s event, the Deputy Director of the Vienna Convention Bureau, Ulrike von Arnold, received one of the industry’s highest honours, ICCA’s Moises Shuster Award. Also at the congress, Gothenburg was named as leading Iceberg partner the Global Destination Sustainability Index for the fourth year running. The GDS-Index Awards were presented as well.

Also in News this issue, outside events have been intruding on the events industry. Weeks of anti-government protests in Chile have forced the cancellation of this month’s APEC trade summit and the COP25 UN climate conference in December. A major healthcare meeting was also abandoned. A serious roof fire at the New Zealand International Convention Centre construction site in Auckland will not prevent the city from hosting the APEC Leaders Week in 2021, but will delay the venue’s opening. On the very day Brexit was supposed to take place, the European Tourism Association held a Brexit seminar in London. Over 100 delegates turned up, but Brexit itself was a no show. Marketing Edinburgh has moved closer to collapse with the entire board of the organisation resigning after city councillors rejected a funding plea to implement new strategy.

Meanwhile Edinburgh also just hosted the Global Incentive Summit, which discussed growth in Asia Pacific and the findings of the Incentive Travel Industry Index. Adelaide will host the 2023 World Potato Congress. The winning bid included the legacy idea of a WPC Trust to fund research and development in developing nations. News also reports on some industry firsts. The Association of Independent Festivals has just held its Festival Congress, the meeting claiming to be the first travel carbon neutral events industry conference. Business Events Montreal has just offered to honour its financial commitment for anticipated event attendance numbers, so confident is it that the delegates will actually turn up. Tourism New Zealand has announced three international meetings whose societal impact is to be measured. The organisation is working with #Meet4Impact and its President and Chief Executive Officer Geneviève Leclerc.

There’s still more on The Iceberg itself (click View all News). MCEC, the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre, is to host the 2022 International Congress on Obesity. The win follows a government commitment on reducing obesity levels. Business Events Sarawak has hosted its first TriBE: Innovation Day, leaving the local meetings industry a legacy of professional development. Hangzhou has staged an event marketing the destination for “new economy” conferences. The meeting included a presentation from Paul Vallee, Managing Director of Iceberg partner BestCities Global Alliance.

There are five new Features this issue. In a fifth part of a series, #MEET4IMPACT’s Geneviève Leclerc discusses the one term everyone connects with legacy creation, measurement. Riga’s lead in 5G deployment has made it a fitting hub to host the 5G Techritory Forum. Plus, there are three great medical congress stories. Doctors and rescue workers have just met in record numbers in Prague at the 13th Congress of the European Society for Emergency Medicine. Congress Centre Basel just hosted the 17th European AIDS Conference. In an Iceberg video exclusive recorded during the recent 33rd Summer School of Iceberg partner European Cities Marketing, Consultant in Critical Care at London’s Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust, Dr Nicholas Barrett, discusses how EuroELSO 2020 will leave legacies in life support next May at London’s QEII Centre.

Eight Opinions this issue are fresh, and three are about food. The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) has been working to prevent food waste in convention centre kitchens and hotels. There’s one piece on their campaign, plus another on the approaches that planners should be following. Plus, in June the first Plant Based World Conference & Expo launched at the Javits Center in New York City.

Also in Opinions, Hamburg’s approach to meetings is described by Florian Gerdes, Marketing Manager Conventions at the Hamburg Convention Bureau. Business Events Luxembourg was created at the end of 2018, and is seeking to double its international meetings by 2024. Over 100 association executives from across Africa have just gathered in Nairobi for the first Africa Association Summit. The final two Next Generation of Leaders Grant winners (given out by Iceberg partner UFI, the exhibition industry’s global association) talk about what NGL mentoring means for them. Finally, there’s a damning appraisal of the industry’s record on accessibility for disabled people from consultant Alan Broadbent, tempered by three great examples of inclusive accessibility in action, from a venue (ICC Wales), a meeting (Glasgow’s IASSIDD World Congress) and a destination (Dubai).

In Research you’ll find added How Canada’s National Meetings Strategy is Driving Regional Economic Growth from Skift and Business Events Canada.

Finally, and as always, The Iceberg reiterates its call for you to join our Global Ambassador Program. You can see Ambassadors listed on The Iceberg homepage, Ambassadors page, and in Business Events World below. Visit Call for Ambassadors 2019 & 2020 to find out more.

Until the next time…

Robert Coren, Curator of The Iceberg

Iceberg founder James Latham (left) at the 58th ICCA Congress.


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