EAS Goes Green in Brussels

February 11, 2019

EAS Goes Green in Brussels

From February 28 to March 1, 2019, visit.brussels organises the European Association Summit (EAS) at the SQUARE – Brussels Convention Centre. For its seventh edition, the European Association Summit (EAS), an annual meeting of exchange and networking between international associations, has chosen an evocative theme: “share and co-create”. This year, the goals of the summit are to allow participants to build links between international associations and thus expand their network to develop short-term and long-term initiatives and to develop new models of cooperation and resource use through learning, networking and new projects.

In addition to these goals, the summit also invites associations to contribute together by their actions to the preservation of the environment. Indeed, the visit.brussels Association Bureau has the will to provide a responsible event to show ways to organise an eco-friendly summit. A plan including the dedication of specific resources, encouraging main stakeholders to adopt sound sustainability practices, and the commitment to specific Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) has been put in place.


February 7, 2019

Boardroom Joins Forces with AC Forum

Boardroom has formed a strategic alliance with the Associations Conference Forum (AC Forum), one of Europe’s only peer-to-peer networking platforms for the associations market.

The two organisations share a strong alignment of interests. Both are focused on delivering high quality, educational content for the associations sector. Boardroom persistently drives the global conversation on the most important topics, trends and destinations and prides itself on its position as an expert source of information for association professionals. AC Forum meanwhile strives to inspire and encourage its members to achieve excellence in association and congress organisation through the open exchange of information. Together they will jointly explore the benefits of peer-to-peer learning through a series of articles, to be featured in each issue of Boardroom commencing this February.

As part of the alliance, AC Forum will leverage Boardroom’s international audience to extend its reach within the sector and draw attention to its membership benefits. Adrian Ott, President, AC Forum, commented: “A partnership with the Boardroom Magazine means that AC Forum can highlight our educational offerings to a broader audience based on a diverse association sector, helping us build on new opportunities and greater interaction. It means that more associations can learn about the value of peer-to-peer education and networking, free of commercial influence.”

AC Forum will also utilise the union to share details of it alternative approach to learning and the sharing of information. “We have developed two Collaborative Learning Experience (CLE) workshops. One with the Leading Centres of Europe, which will take place in July, and another with the Switzerland Convention and Incentive Bureau for this autumn. Both of these will reflect the societal changes in learning and personal development by challenging us to move out of our comfort zones and discover new opportunities and challenges put into context with partners that many of us work with,”added Ott.

Remi Deve, Chief Editor, Boardroom said: “I’m delighted to have agreed this strategic partnership with the AC Forum. Boardroom’s vision and mission are all about the education of associations based globally, and we feel there is a strong alignment between our two organisations.”

This latest partnership marks another step forward in Boardroom’s broader strategy to collaborate with experts from leading industry associations around the world. Thanks to existing partnerships with organisations including the European Society of Association Executives (ESAE), the Professional Convention Management Association (PCMA), and the government-controlled and sponsored China Social Organization, the publication reaches more than 7,500 associations across the globe as well as more than 10,000 industry professionals, in the major languages of English, Mandarin Chinese and Spanish.

Photo: Members of the AC Forum at the 20th anniversary of the organisation, in Vienna, in January.


February 6, 2019

Innovative Urban Projects for Viparis

As part of the 2nd edition of “Reinventing Paris” (Beneath the City), an innovative urban project to transform Paris’s underground spaces, Viparis will realise “Peace&Log”. The sustainable architectural project submitted by Viparis, was chosen by the Mayor of Paris and a jury of urban planning experts and elected officials and will be located at Espace Champerret– an event venue managed by Viparis.

By separating off traffic flows associated with the Espace Champerret’s activities from the public sphere, Peace&Log will optimise the venue’s logistics while improving residents’ quality of life. Delivery vehicles will have access to a dedicated dock – a former service station – located in a lower level of Espace Champerret. Moreover, Viparis and its partner Agripolis will use the transformation of the Espace Champerret site to set up the first multimodal food cooperative selling Parisian agricultural products – part of the produce offered for sale will come from the world’s largest urban rooftop farm located atop the future Pavilion 6 at Paris Expo Porte de Versailles. The farm is expected to open in late 2019. At the same time, an innovative baggage management platform will allow visitors to Espace Champerret to check their luggage, encouraging them to use public transport rather than taxis.


February 4, 2019

How Relationships Underpin Success

Legacy is cemented in relationships. The way we learn from each other, relate to different experiences and viewpoints and interchange our philosophies, form the basis of humanity. Our position in the world becomes defined by our association to others. To our ancestors, our present circle and our imagined future selves. These connections, and their power to shape who we are, leave a significant indent in our life’s course – in our legacies.

Relationships have always been an important focus in the business world – it is critical when it comes to success. Understanding what the client wants and how to best deliver, supporting other workers to produce their best work and collaborating as a team, even with dividing opinions, is crucial. A final product often extends back to several layers of input – it is rare to accomplish something completely alone.

Shifting our perspective of legacy from one that is tangible to intangible has become increasingly common. Measuring events by financial success no longer holds such weight within society. It instead has become centered on the immaterial actions of organizations which impact the world and people around them. Holding a lens to how we create meaning in business is particularly pertinent in our fast-paced technological era. Focusing on relationships – both positive and negative – produces greater transparency, accountability and long-term success. It is a defining factor in the creation of a business.

Inspiring transformation

Former CEO and now Executive Chairman of Starbucks, Howard Shultz, powerfully spoke to this idea. He emphasised how authenticity inspires transformation: “In this ever-changing society, the most powerful and enduring brands are built from the heart. They are real and sustainable. Their foundations are stronger because they are built with the strength of the human spirit.”

Examples of harnessing aspects of success outside financial liability are constant. McDonald’s, perhaps one of the biggest symbols for corporate greed in our Western world, has this year pledged to use renewable, recyclable or certified materials in all packaging worldwide by 2025. Last year, Google’s global operations became fully powered by renewable energy – and they became the world’s largest corporate buyer of renewable power. Tesla is skyrocketing in sales and support for their eco-friendly electric powered cars. Locally, the rise of companies like Keep Cup and Frank Green, which both sell reusable coffee cups, have risen based on our desire to help save the planet.

These decisions extend further than environmental impact as companies have long turned to making their products, and processes, ethical. Whilst the fashion industry is constantly gaining undesirable attention for its abuse of power when it comes to sustainability and ethical sourcing, global retailer H&M has redirected this negativity. They have committed to supply chain transparency by publishing an up-to-date list of suppliers’ names and addresses on their website each quarter.

Changing the legacy

Whilst these actions have been at the forefront of our decision making for a while now, it is still critical in highlighting the importance of relationships. Without hesitation it is easy to suggest that the purpose of business is financial success and stability. Turning focus towards aiding the environment and conducting ethical practice for example, despite its cost, thus becomes highly significant. Organizations are emphasising the connection they hold with their consumer, their partners and their global reach – and they are listening to how the world is changing. They are altering their course based on how we are responding. They are changing their legacy because of the intangible necessity relationships have towards their growth.

The full version of  this article,  provided by the International Association of Professional Congress Organisers, authors Ruby Kraner-Tucci and Sarah Markey-Hamm from ICMS Pty Ltd, Australia (www.icms.com.au), will be available in the upcoming edition of Boardroom. info@iapco.org / www.iapco.org      

February 1, 2019

New Ambassadors Appointed for Brussels

visit.brussels recently awarded the title of destination ambassador to 18 partners who greatly contributed to publicising Brussels in 2018 and confirming its status as an international MICE destination. The 18 new ambassadors received their awards before academics, doctors, European commissioners, university rectors, chairs and directors of international associations established in Brussels, scientists, hospital directors and other partners.

Launched two years ago by visit.brussels, the aim behind this event was to bring new international events to Brussels by activating a network of professionals. In fact, local talents and experts are actively participating in projecting the Belgian capital internationally. In 2017, 757 meetings took place in the Belgian capital, which meant that Brussels was once again the first-placed city in Europe and placed second in the world for organising conferences (according to the annual report of the Union of International Associations).

January 30, 2019

Copenhagen Scores Another Win in Sustainability

Copenhagen sets a new international standard for sustainable tourism as Wonderful Copenhagen, becomes the world’s first certified Green Tourism Organisation. The new Green Tourism Organizations certification has been established by HORESTA together with the NGO Danish Outdoor Council to support the destinations and organisations, that make an extra effort for sustainability. HORESTA was also part of creating the Green Key certificate 25 years ago, that has now spread to 55 countries and 2.900 tourism organisations.

To become certified, organisation will be assessed from around 140 different criteria including management, environmental considerations, requirements to the organisations’ use of utilities, but also in relation to the efforts of the organisation putting focus on sustainable tourism.

”We are really proud to be the first certified Green Tourism Organization. It’s close to our hearts for tourism in Copenhagen to contribute to sustainable development both locally and globally and contribute to UN’s 17 Sustainability Development Goals. Copenhagen is already amongst the most sustainable congress cities in the world and with this certification Wonderful Copenhagen makes good on our pledge to be leading by example,” says Kit Lykketoft, Director of Conventions at Wonderful Copenhagen.

January 28, 2019

Vienna Brings AC Forum Back to its Roots

From January 17-19, 2019 Vienna played host to the European Associations & Conference Forum (AC Forum). The organisation’s General Assembly and Annual Meeting chose to celebrate its 20th anniversary in the Austrian capital, where it was founded in 1999, at the initiative of Vienna Tourist Board’s Vienna Convention Bureau in cooperation with various partners in the city.

The AC Forum now represents 32 scientific associations from nine countries. Its General Assembly and Annual Meeting are held in a different major European city each year. The 20th anniversary event set a new attendance record, attracting 138 representatives from its member associations.

Inspired by Fit for Future, the gathering gave participants a chance to compare notes on all the latest developments in the congress industry, talk about the use of new technology at large-scale conferences and discuss the association’s future direction. Events took place at Messe Wien, the Austria Center Vienna and Hotel Kempinski, with support from Austrian Airlines.

January 25, 2019

London Campaigns Against Plastic

ExCeL London is taking positive steps to reduce waste and is launching a ‘No Plastic’ campaign to outline the venue’s commitment to this global issue. “Waste from single-use plastic is a critical issue for our industry,” says Jeremy Rees, CEO of ExCeL London. “We need to take a position on this to significantly reduce the amount of waste that we generate.”

The campaign has initially focused on the role of the 27 retailers along the venue’s central boulevard. All plastic straws have been removed from point of sale and suppliers have committed to offering discounts to customers who have a reusable coffee cup. To reduce the disposal of hundreds of thousands of plastic bottles, permanent water fountains have been installed to provide free chilled water to visitors, exhibitors and organisers who bring a reusable container.

Moreover, a new bin infrastructure with clearer waste streams is being installed, enabling visitors to sort their waste more easily which will reduce environmental impact, whilst allowing guests to make more sustainable choices.

January 24, 2019

Register for New Year’s Gala by ESAE

The European Society of Association Executives (ESAE), partners of Boardroom, is organising their first New Year’s Cocktail networking gala for its members and partners. Held at the Hilton Hotel in Brussels on 31 January, this year’s theme will be “Associations Community and the E.U. : Shaping the Future Together”.

The program will begin at 18.00 with registration and will continue until 21.oo with presentations and keynote speeches from distinguished personalities on topics such as how associations can prepare their future engagement with EU Institutions and how they influence the decision-making process and the rules’ implementation at the E.U. level.

January 23, 2019

Cape Town: MBA World Summit 2018

Conferences and exhibitions drive industries, propel business and contribute significantly to global GDP. In South Africa, they contribute over R115 billion to national GDP. They are a transformative strategy for countries looking to boost their knowledge and creative economies.

In March 2018, the MBA World Summit was held in Philippi, the largest township in Cape Town, South Africa, where local entrepreneurs were partnered with international MBA students to help them grow their businesses through skills transfer and knowledge sharing. The MBA World Summit is a perfect example of how business events are the catalyst for large-scale socio-economic impacts, not only on tourism, but also on deal making, business transactions, training, research, development and education.

Read The Iceberg’s case study here.