Copenhagen Creates ‘Tourism For Good’

December 10, 2018

Copenhagen Creates ‘Tourism For Good’

As tourist numbers keep growing around the globe, tourism is seen as a problem since it poses a challenge to the planet’s sustainability. The city of Copenhagen has chosen to see tourism not as part of the problem but as part of the solution. Wonderful Copenhagen, the city’s official DMO, has, therefore, taken it upon itself to present a way towards responsible tourism by launching recently an ambitious strategy called ‘Tourism for Good’. The strategy views sustainability from an environmental, social and economic perspective while contributing to 8 out of 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

Wonderful Copenhagen’s ambition for 2030 is that tourism in the city and its surrounding areas positively impacts local and global sustainable development. This progressive strategy is aiming to do just that through four different focus areas. Broadening tourism to areas outside the city centre’s boundaries and, hence, offering tourists a much wider choice of activities and richer experiences is the first concern of the strategy. A second one will be to guide tourists towards responsible consumption and behaviour by promoting sustainable products and ways of transportation. Thirdly, as part of the strategy, partnerships are to be formed in order for information and measurements to get collected so that increased knowledge on sustainability is acquired and passed along. Finally, Wonderful Copenhagen has chosen to lead by example, taking the greatest possible sustainability considerations when it comes to its own operations.

‘Tourism for Good’ could not go unnoticed in the international scene. Secretary-General of UNTWO, Zurab Pololikashvili, praised the initiative when talking to Copenhagen’s Convention Bureau: “This strategy is designed to foster sustainability at local level, where both visitors and hosts can enjoy exploring, living and learning from each other. This is also one of the core objectives of UNWTO’s INSTO network. Through its strategic commitment to a holistic approach for destination sustainability, Copenhagen will contribute to realizing the potential of the Danish tourism sector as an agent of change.” Furthermore, the strategy received praise at the recent ICCA awards where Copenhagen won the Innovation Award. “The initiative marks a very positive approach to changing negative feelings surrounding the tourism industry and encouraging local communities to recognise the benefits of a thriving tourism scene,” said ICCA President James Rees.

Director of the International Sustainable Tourism Initiative, Megan Epler Wood, has worked in depth with sustainability in tourism and the effects of over-tourism and describes the strategy as “ahead of its time.” “The city has a grand plan that seeks to boldly expand tourism without harming their city’s culture or environment. Their effort will be facilitated through continuous consultation with locals and measurements of impacts via third party organizations. They seek to leapfrog over the problems of overtourism by emphasizing that a destination can and must be designed for visitors and locals alike.”

 

December 10, 2018

VisitBritain Sets New Partnership In Train

VisitBritain has partnered up with Eurostar and Virgin Trains to offer a united travel service for the meetings market and attract more international business events to the UK. The partnership gives international event planners the freedom to book multi-stop journeys from mainland Europe to British destinations on the Eurostar and Virgin Trains networks through a ‘one-stop-shop’ booking experience.

The new booking service provides easier access to new business destinations including Manchester, Liverpool and Birmingham, enabling groups to discover more venues, attractions, heritage and culture in cities beyond London. Event planners will also be able to book out carriages or trains for their events at discounted travel rates, and can change or transfer tickets between delegates.

 

December 6, 2018

Basel is Ready for a Busy 2019

The end of the year finds Congress Center Basel (CCB) once again able to host a number of top-class events, including the major international events of DIA Europe and the AMEE Conference. All in all, the CCB holds around 200 events each year, from press conferences, via meetings of national and international associations, specialist exhibitions and panel discussions, right through to special events in the field of music and showbusiness.

2019 will follow this rate of success as it is expected to be a record year for the CCB in terms of events and participant numbers. Various small congresses in the first quarter, including the 50th Annual Meeting of the International Association of Professional Congress Organisers IAPCO, will start the year. As of May, one congress follows immediately after another, starting with the Annual Meeting of the German and Austrian Society for Epileptology and the Swiss Epilepsy League, followed by the congress of the Swiss Association of Nurses SBK-ASI and the 43rd ICCM World Congress on Military Medicine. The congress spring ends with the three-day congress of the European Society for Developmental Perinatal and Pediatric Pharmacology ESDPPP 2019.

The busy year continues with the 12th International Symposium on Pediatric Pain in the summer and the 29th Regional Congress of the ISBT. At the end of July, CCB will be hosting the Leading Professional Society for Computational Biology and Bioinformatics ISMB/ECCB 2019 and, at the end of August, the Advanced Prostate Cancer Consensus Conference APCCC 2019. In the autumn, BASEL LIFE 2019 and ABIM come in strong, ending with the 17th European AIDS Conference in November.

 

Photo : Congress Centre Basel

December 5, 2018

Monaco and Grimaldi Forum Keep Rising

In the context of this year’s ibtm World, Monaco Convention Bureau has announced its growing success over the years, reaching the 85th position in the ICCA ranking for conference destinations worldwide and the 40th in Europe. This is due to the turn the Principality is taking towards more diverse key sectors, with special focus on New Technologies, Finance, Automotive and Luxury Brands.

In an effort to establish itself as a ‘green’ destination, a new campaign has been launched focusing on Destination Sustainability. Furthermore, in cooperation with KLM, AirFrance and Monacair, the Monaco Convention Bureau provides special rates for delegates both for travelling and accommodation, as well as a number of transfer opportunities.

Grimaldi Forum, the Principality’s conference centre, works hand in hand with the convention bureau. This close relationship, the luminous setup and the Forum’s ‘green’ certification have resulted in a 4% increase since last year, bringing in events such as Cybersecurity and IPCC-Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

December 4, 2018

Wales Sets the Stage for International Business Events

With the opening of the new International Conference Centre Wales in 2019, the Welsh Government’s Business Events team is drawing global attention to the country as part of Wales ‘Year of Discovery’, highlighting Wales as a centre of expertise and academic research, as well as its blend of natural landscapes, culture and heritage.

In October, the inaugural “The Business of Events Wales” conference was held at Celtic Manor Resort, Newport. The event brought together leading stakeholders and influencers from across the Welsh and international business events sector for the first time. With a focus on Wales’ key economic sectors including Life Sciences, Advanced Materials and Manufacturing, Creative Industries, Food and Drink, Energy and Environment, Financial and Professional Services and Technology the high-profile event highlighted Wales’ golden opportunity to earn a greater market share of business events from the UK and the rest of the world.

Heledd Williams, Head of Business Events for Visit Wales said: “Event planners are increasingly looking to countries like Wales with connectivity, expertise and wonderful places to explore. The “Year of Discovery” will be a great opportunity to highlight Wales’ pioneering history and innovation with a range of unique business events venues from Cardiff Castle to the Chateau Rhianfa just waiting to be discovered.”

December 3, 2018

Gothenburg Receives Associations World Congress & Expo 2019

On 7 – 9 April 2019, Sweden’s second city, Gothenburg, welcomes the Associations World Congress & Expo (AWC) to the Swedish Exhibition & Congress Centre (SECC), for the first time in Scandinavia. The extensive programme was launched at IBTM World in Barcelona on Wednesday 28th November and it includes a number of different opportunities when it comes to following sessions. A richer educational program with six segments each with seven sessions to choose from will be offered under the theme ‘Knowledge and Enlightenment’.

“We are very excited to launch a new and progressive programme for the next congress and to have the opportunity to share an amazing venue and city with our delegates in Gothenburg next year.”,says Damien Hutt Director of Association of Associations Executives that organises AWC.

The city’s success is based on the ability to find new ways of providing services in strong relationship with planners. A fact that is greatly appreciated by visiting meeting associations. “Gothenburg is a rising star, but still less known than our competitors. That is why we must show ourselves to the meetings world and attracting Associations World Congress is a key step in that direction”, says Annika Hallman, Director of Gothenburg Convention Bureau at Göteborg & Co.

Recently the Swedish Exhibition & Congress Centre, presented the third phase of its expansion plans in launching a competition to design its fourth hotel tower. The aim is to achieve a total hotel capacity of roughly 1,600 rooms by 2025.

 

Photo : From right: Eva Flyborg, City council of Gothenburg, Annika Hallman, Gothenburg Convention Bureau, Damian Hutt, Association of Association Executives, Malin Erlandsson, Swedish Exhibition & Congress Centre.

November 30, 2018

Athens Turns to Innovation

Athens is the winner of this year’s European Capital of Innovation Awards. The contest, which is funded by the EU research and innovation program Horizon 2020, took place in Lisbon earlier this month. The City of Athens has placed a lot of importance to innovation and how it can help the local community bring about change and open up to the world. Some of the innovations promoted include projects for renovating old buildings, caring for refugees, creating the Digital Council and the ‘This is Athens’ campaign.

The award criteria, ‘experimenting, engaging, expanding, empowering’, analyse how cities use innovation and new technologies to respond to societal challenges, engage broad local communities in their decision-making processes and improve lives of their citizens.

Coalitions such as This is Athens & Partners, vast opening of brand new hotels and investments on hotels from international firms, confirm that Athens, based on the spirit of cooperation, not only has overcome the recent economic recession, but it has also developed and expanded, taking advantage of innovation. With the backdrop of a unique heritage, the city is now a contemporary hub and a quality destination for congress tourism.

November 29, 2018

Copenhagen Wins Innovation Award for Sustainability

Copenhagen improved to a second place on the GDS-Index and received the innovation award at this year’s ICCA Awards as a recognition for the city’s efforts in making Copenhagen the world’s most sustainable capital in terms of tourism.

The innovation award was given to Copenhagen for Wonderful Copenhagen’s work with the soon to be released sustainability strategy, Tourism for Good. A strategy that will focus on making tourism a driver both locally and globally for sustainable development, just as it will focus on making the Copenhagen CVB more sustainable.

“This is a great appreciation of the efforts being made in Copenhagen, as we continuously look for new ways to become more sustainable. Sustainability is always work-in-progress and we invite all good forces to join us on the journey forward,” says Kit Lykketoft, Director at Conventions and Wonderful Copenhagen.

November 27, 2018

Lausanne Climbs the Rankings

Lausanne Montreux Congress (LMC), the recently formed partnership on the shores of Lake Geneva, aimed at attracting and supporting the congress market, has announced it has been ranked among the top 20 destinations worldwide in the Global Destination Sustainability Index.

The announcement, which took place at the ICCA conference in Dubai, is an annual index recognising the responsible practices and sustainable growth of international meeting destinations in the business tourism and events industry. Destinations are measured in four key areas: performance, industry supplier-support from entities such as hotels and convention centres, social and environmental sustainability strategies and by sharing the best practices from around the world.

When announcing their partnership last year, LMC set out clear goals to integrate the GDS-Index into their strategy, focusing largely on sustainable development to limit their impact on their exceptional surroundings. The partnership was designed with a vision to transcend political boarders in order to bring together two strong business regions and increase the destinations ability to cater for large associations and congresses with a more diverse venue portfolio and combined MICE expertise.

November 26, 2018

Glasgow’s Plans for Expansion

The Scottish Event Campus(SEC) has applied for planning permission in principle (PPIP) for a major expansion of its facilities with a vision to create a unique global event campus, building on its long standing success of attracting global conferences, exhibitions and events. The project focuses on developing the west end of the campus and includes a dedicated entrance, additional highly flexible meeting, exhibition and networking spaces, and panoramic views of the city and River Clyde.

Billy McFadyen, Finance & Development Director, SEC said: “The SEC currently offers Glasgow and Scotland a solution to stage events of varying sizes.  However, competition worldwide is robust and constantly evolving.  In order to maintain this level of success we need to invest in our product to ensure we have the best facilities. The plans for this expansion will fulfil this and create a truly unique UK Event Campus which will be world class.”

Photo : SEC Glasgow