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The Global Association Hubs Partnership: Growing Above Average

The Global Association Hubs Partnership, founded in Autumn 2015 and an Iceberg partner, brings together four major hubs across America, Europe, the Middle East and Asia. As it passes its third anniversary, Brussels, Dubai, Singapore and Washington DC are enjoying association growth of 2.5 percent, well above the global average of 0.9 percent. From Boardroom…

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MEET RĪGA: The Outsourcing, Insourcing Debate

As more associations create event departments, some see less value in the work of professional congress organisers. So are associations’ event departments taking over what PCOs or destination management companies bring to the table, and what does that actually mean? Aigars Smiltans, director of MEET RĪGA, explains. From Boardroom…

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Meetings Need to Become Part of the Innovation Economy

Meetings need to become part of the innovation economy, according to the recent ICCA Congress in Dubai, and this “new industrial revolution” needs fresh thinking from suppliers. The discussion included city expert Greg Clark and Vienna’s Christian Mutschlechner, who joked that planners might soon 3D print their own venues. From editor’s blog at Meetings & Incentive Travel…

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Global Economic Significance of Business Events: Video

A new study has found that the business events industry boosts global gross domestic product by $1.5 trillion. Karen Kotowski, CEO of the Events Industry Council, which is behind the Global Economic Significance of Business Events report, discusses its findings with Carina Bauer, CEO of IMEX, which was one of the partners in the research. From IMEX…

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Mike Cannon: The Sarawak Outsider Returns to AACB

Mike Cannon, former Executive Director of the Association of Australian Convention Bureaux, was recently in Sydney to collect an AACB Hall of Fame plaque. During he visit he gave an interview on affordable events, Australia’s new Business Events Bid Fund, regional meetings, future challenges for convention bureaux, and their value to members. From CIM News Magazine…

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The Association Model: Not a Dead End After All, Says Research

The rise of the ‘individual’, modern consumerism, social media, open-source publishing: all have been cited as reasons why the traditional association model is doomed. It’s a viewpoint which does assume that associations are incapable of self-reform. And yet industry research keeps showing the number of international association meetings going up and up. From Association Meetings International…

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The Hague & Partners: Awarding North Sea Sustainability Legacies

It’s the job of a convention bureau to promote destination assets. In 2017 The Hague & Partners created an awards programme to highlight innovative local organisations and professionals. This year the scheme was expanded further to showcase sustainability initiatives leveraging The Hague’s location as the only Netherlands city on the sea. From PCMA Convene…

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Middle East Meetings: New Trends and New Technology

Like many new markets, the Middle East and North Africa has its own dynamics with events, meetings, and conferences. The culture is all about personal relationships, so face-to-face is always important for business. Exhibition Director Middle East of IBTM Arabia, Danielle Curtis, shares insights on future trends and technology. From the Event…

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“Tourism” or “Economic Development”? The Debate Continues

The debate about whether business events are “tourism” or “economic development” has been rumbling on for a decade. At a JMIC meeting earlier this year, the room decided “economic development” was the correct term. But one Iceberg partner finds himself going both ways (and with a spectacular mixing of metaphors).  From SoolNua’s Pádraic Gilligan at Padraicino…

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The Watkins Report: City Rankings from Meetings Professionals

The Watkins Report for US and Canadian convention bureaux is published biennially, and Curt Watkins of Watkins Research has been conducting the study for the past 25 years. Here he shares his perspective on how the features planners are seeking in their host destinations have changed over recent decades. From PCMA Convene…

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Charleston: $63m Events Loss After Hurricane Florence

While Hurricane Florence didn’t touch down in Charleston, the destination estimates it took a $63 million hit as a result of cancelled events. Some organisers postponed early to avoid potential issues, others tried to move forward right up until the governor issued the call for mandatory evacuation. Some groups even turned events virtual. From PCMA Convene…

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CVBs: Giving Planners the Personal Touch During Site Visits

Comments from planners surveyed by the biennial Watkins Report show that when convention bureaux go out of their way to make personal connections with them, it has a big impact on site selection. Making introductions, escorting planners round hotels, and demonstrating how well stakeholders will work together, all make an impression. From PCMA Convene…

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Dubai: Hosting the Institute of Internal Auditors

Getting the Institute of Internal Auditors to hold its conference in Dubai began with the United Arab Emirates IIA Chapter and the Al Safeer Congress Ambassador Programme. It helped that the city had hosted the IIA Global Council back in 2014. The four-day 2018 event attracted 3,000 experts from over 100 countries. From Boardroom…

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Mutschlechner: Thought Leader and Game Changer

The retirement of Christian Mutschlechner from the Vienna Convention Bureau next year may, or may not, mean he is departing from the wider industry. But the fact Vienna consistently out-performed bigger cities, and has become one of the world’s top convention destinations, owes a great deal to him. From editor’s blog at Association Meetings International…

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Peru: History, New Infrastructure and a Growing Economy

While the larger markets of Brazil, Mexico, Argentina and Colombia will surely be the focus of the upcoming UFI Latin America Conference, the growing economy of Peru is also worthy of attention. Better known as a holiday destination and for Machu Picchu, a new convention center has been built in the capital city, Lima. From UFI…

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Attracting Hydrogen Meetings to the Czech Republic

The 7th International Conference on Hydrogen Technologies took place in Prague in July 2017. Work to bring the conference to the Czech Republic capital started as early as 2009. Professor Dr. Ing. Karel Bouzek (above receiving an ambassador award) was the meeting’s local champion, and reflects how it developed after the bid was won. From Boardroom…

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