How the Association World is Evolving

August 16, 2018

How the Association World is Evolving

Our partner PCMA/Convene just published a very interesting article on the evolution of the association community, written by Ben Hainsworth, executive director for K.I.T. Group, where he talks about market change and legacy.

Ben spent many years working for a large European medical society where he managed the congress and meetings division. But in 2014, he felt it was time for a change and moved on to an association and conference management company, K.I.T. Group.

You can read the full article here.


August 13, 2018

High Performance Secretariats Are Important

At the June session of the Association Leadership Academy were shared the conclusions of a report compiled by the recruitment company Ellwood Atfield. Based on face-to-face interviews, an online survey, and insights from other previous research, the report identifies seven key attributes of a high performance secretariat. Those attributes are: individual accountability, shared responsibility, open communication, participative leadership, mutual trust, proactive and responsive attitude and alignement on strategy.

Those attributes have been also confronted against the leadership of an association, as well as staff expectations for reward. The presentation at the event also underlined the need for an evaluation among the membership of the functioning of an association’s secretariat and keep the track on matching the purposes and resources of an organisation.

At the event two case studies served to illustrate the change management process related to their Secretariat undertaken by the Secretaries General of two associations, Euroheat & Power and CLEPA – the European Association of Automotive Suppliers.

The report is available on the company website –  here.

It will also be reported on in the September issue of Boardroom.

August 9, 2018

Speakers Announced for First International Tourism Security Summit

Speakers from UNWTO, the OECD, SmithBucklin, and TBWA are among the international speakers who have been announced as the speakers and panel leaders at the inaugural International Tourism Security Summit (ITSS), which will take place in Jerusalem this October 7-9, 2018. The new two-day conference will explore how destinations respond during turbulent times. The summit aims to provide its participants with practical knowledge and critical skills for preparing, mitigating, managing and recovering from tourism crises.

The conference will be held in Jerusalem, a city that over the past few decades has experienced numerous incidents of terror and conflict while maintaining its global position as an exciting tourist destination. Jerusalem is the bustling capital of Israel, a place where ancient meets modern. The city is a tourist destination that attracts millions of visitors every year, and in which tourism safety and security is part of the conversation.

More information here.

August 8, 2018

Global TEDSummit Chooses Scotland

Scotland will play host to the next TEDSummit in 2019. It will take place at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre from 21 to 25 July 2019, bringing together up to 1,300 members of the international TED community.

The bid to bring the event to Edinburgh was led by the EICC, VisitScotland Business Events, Convention Edinburgh, and Scottish Enterprise, backed by support from the Scottish Government, the Lord Provost of Edinburgh, the University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh Napier University, Social Bite, Festivals Edinburgh, Edinburgh Science Festival and the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations. All worked together to show why the capital is the ideal place to host this gathering of world-leading thinkers.

TED is a non-profit organisation devoted to identifying, and then spreading, relevant and potentially impactful ideas. It began in 1984 with a conference converging technology, entertainment and design and over time the organization has expanded its topics from science to business to global issues. TEDSummit gathers the most engaged members of the global TED community for community brainstorms, discussions, performances, workshops, outdoor activities and an eclectic program of mainstage talks – in beautiful surroundings.

August 3, 2018

Arts Marketing Association Chooses NewcastleGateshead

NewcastleGateshead will host the Arts Marketing Association for its 2019 annual conference, which will attract over 600 delegates from the cultural sector. The event will take place at Sage Gateshead on 9 – 11 July 2019, and participants are to immerse themselves in the conference experience with a programme that is set to cover the hottest topics in the sector plus an exciting range of social and networking events.

Danielle Patrick, Head of Projects and Events at the AMA said: “We were won over by NewcastleGateshead during the bidding process. The city has a huge cultural offering – iconic venues like Sage Gateshead, BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art and Newcastle Castle are prominent amongst the cityscape and the city’s impressive cultural status is exactly what we’re looking for in a conference destination. We also found the city to be extremely welcoming and friendly, which left a lasting impression.”

August 2, 2018

Geneva Health Forum:
A Platform for Dialogue

Organized every two years since 2006, the Geneva Health Forum (GHF) was created by the Geneva University Hospitals and the Faculty of Medicine of Geneva University. Held at the International Conference Center of Geneva (CICG), it has become, in a decade, the flagship event for global health. Working on the Steering Committee, NicoleRosset, Deputy Director, External Affairs Directorate, Geneva University Hospitals, explains why Geneva can be considered the Global Health Capital and what makes it – together with the CICG – a great conference destination.

Every other year in the spring, the Geneva Health Forum (GHF) combines plenary and parallel sessions and attracts hundreds of participants, with a large international exhibition area. Geneva University Hospitals, along with the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Geneva and Swiss and international organizations active in the field of health have joined their talents and resources to organize the Forum. Nicole Rosset explains: “The success of the Geneva Health Forum is primarily based on its original format. Through interactive approaches, the GHF aims to create a space for dialogue between professionals in the field of health services, policy makers, academics, the media, civil society and the private sector. As the cradle of international dialogue and the global capital of health policies, Geneva provides a strategic location to do so.”

The Lake Geneva region, often described as the ‘Health Valley’, presents a unique concentration of healthcare and academic institutions, and is blossoming with many innovative biotech, medtech, and engineering start-ups, as well as larger companies in the health sector. Nicole Rosset even calls it a ‘unique ecosystem’: “In Geneva, there are international organizations with a global health agenda – WHO, UNAIDS or UNITAIDS just to name a few – NGOs like Doctors Without Borders, permanent missions to the UN of more than 140 countries, private public partnerships working on research to eradicate AIDS or malaria, philanthropic foundations… where else would it make sense to debate over and make health policy decisions on a global scale?”

And not only does Geneva provide the software so that the world can meet in ideal conditions, but the hardware is also a draw. Geneva’s location in the heart of Europe, its stability on an economic, political and social level, its easiness of access both by plane and train make it an association’s favorite. “I would add the beauty of its landscape of course,”says Nicole Rosset“but also its human size, which makes it easy to navigate. In terms of conference infrastructure, besides the abundant accommodation options, you can hardly beat the CICG, a multi-purpose, very flexible facility which meets all the requirements you can expect from such a venue. The teams working there are both very friendly and professional, and they can show great adaptability when necessary.”

In this regard, conferences like the Geneva Health Forum are instrumental in profiling Geneva on the world scene. ‘That’s one of the definite impacts of the Forum actually,” Nicole Rosset concludes. “It positions a small metropolis like Geneva like a global village.”

More information on CICG / //on Switzerland as a convention destination /

This article was written by Boardroom Chief Editor Rémi Dévé (

July 30, 2018

What to Expect at IBTM World 2018

Taking place 27-29 November in Barcelona, IBTM World has long been a major draw for association attendees, thanks to its reputation for being a hub for event innovations and insights that will get creative juices flowing, and provide inspiration and education to help attendees create show-stopping events.

This year’s show will bring a breath of opportunities and content tailored to an association audience, including its leading Hosted Buyer programme, dedicated networking events, global exhibitors of real appeal to association buyers and a full Knowledge Programme, including sessions specifically created for association visitors.

Duncan Wardle, one of the primary creative forces behind The Walt Disney Company, has been announced as one of the three keynotes. He will lead the ‘innovation, technology and creativity’ stream of the Knowledge Programme, and will draw on his 25-year outstanding career with The Walt Disney Company and his experience leading a team of creative ideation consultants, to show how leveraging creative thinking can generate far reaching and unexpected business results.

This year’s Knowledge Programme is headlined by three relevant and inspiring keynote speakers from outside the industry who will lead a schedule of54 sessions on eight topical content themes aimed to leave participants inspired and motivated to apply learnings to their own exciting events. Content streams include innovation, technology and creativity; industry trends; engagement and experiences; safety and security; sustainability and CSR; professional development, recruitment and wellbeing; business development and strategy;and marketing and digital.

A raft of exhibitors have already been confirmed to attend, including first time attendees,Tourism New Zealand, Plus DMC Group, Standard International Management hotel group and creative technology company Codemodeon, which develops fun experiences by utilising breakthrough technology in virtual reality, augmented reality and mixed reality. Returning exhibitors include Hyatt Hotel Group, Hilton, Kempinski Hotels, Germany Convention Bureau, Switzerland Convention & Incentive Bureau, Slovenia Meetings, Malaysia Convention & Exhibition Bureau, VisitScotland and partners, Barcelona Convention Bureau, amongst many others.

We are excited to welcome our association attendees to this year’s show in Barcelona and to help them be inspired by the breath of technological innovation, tailored content and education sessions available to them.Our Knowledge Programme is purposefully designed to spark cutting-edge thinking and it provides easy to digest bulletins, packed with fresh thinking, practical insight and the latest industry innovations and trends.” says Shane Hannam, Portfolio Director, IBTM. “We’ve spent the last 30 years helping the international events industry connect and do business, and we understand the importance of creating valuable business connections for our association attendees. Therefore, we are committed to maximising the value in their attendance and help them meet people who really matter and can make a difference to their organisation at our fun and friendly networking events.”

Last year’s event welcomed almost 3,000 exhibiting companiesfrom over 150 countries who were joined by 3,463 buyers and thousands of visitors, with over 74,000 pre-scheduled meetings taking place over the three-day event.

For more information on IBTM World 2018 visit

July 26, 2018

An Invitation to Switzerland

The Switzerland Convention & Incentive Bureau (SCIB) based in Brussels, organises its traditional workshop on 23 October at 6PM which will take place at Hof ter Musschen in Woluwé. Associations are invited to discover the many possibilities for meetings and events in Switzerland.

This year the original theme is: Act like a Coach to excel in your performances. Thanks to its varied landscapes and great climate, Switzerland undoubtedly offers an elaborate choice of infrastructures for meetings or conferences, but also a great variety of facilities for group activities in different disciplines. 10 Swiss partners will be present, as well as keynote speaker, Paul Van Den Bosch.

This evening is exclusively for professional organisers of meetings and is by invitation only. To obtain your own personal invitation, please contact


July 25, 2018

AIPC 2018: How Global Issues Impact Local Business

AIPC, the international association of congress centres, represents a global network of over 185 centres in 60 countries with the active involvement of more than 900 management-level professionals worldwide. It encourages excellence in convention centre management, based on the diverse experience and expertise of its international representation. To do so, it is engaging in a variety of educational, research, networking and standards programs. Its Annual Congress is part of those efforts to bring excellence in all areas of centre management: 2018 saw about 250 delegates converge to ExCeL London to tackle the very broad theme of Strategies for a Changing World!

The Conference achieved a balance between high level perspectives on global issues of potential significance for the meetings industry and the creation of practical solutions to the consequences for local centre management. These ranged from the implications of significant international and geo-political turmoil – as exemplified by the UK Brexit challenges evident in the Conference location – to growing urgencies in such areas as talent acquisition, accommodation access and affordability and a rapidly evolving exhibition industry.

Featured keynotes included Razeen Sally, a Singapore-based global economist and expert on trade agreements and global economic trends, who addressed the evolution of international relations and trade in a world increasingly moving toward protectionism and trade friction and Roger Martin-Fagg, a business process expert who counselled members on creating business strategies for uncertain conditions. Other sessions included a review of the international hotel scene under “peak” business conditions, the challenges faced by centres in recruiting and retaining key staff in a period of increasingly full employment and a highly selective work force and a comparison of different centre management models along with the factors considered by owners in choosing amongst alternatives.

Each “thought” session was followed up with industry-based panels that focused on the centre-specific implications of the big picture topics and explored ways in which centres might or already have responded. These latter insights served to “ground” discussion of high level issues and enable group insights that will assist centre executives in creating their own response strategies.

In 2019, the Conference will be held at the Flanders Meeting & Convention Center Antwerp. In 2020, the Malaysia International Trade and Exhibition Centre (MITEC) in Kuala Lumpur was selected.



July 24, 2018

Austria Center Vienna Wecomes European Council Meetings

In the second half of 2018, Austria will hold the rotating presidency of the European Council for the third time, after its presidencies in 1998 and 2006. During this time, Austria will serve as an important political hub within the EU. The majority of conferences at ministerial level and meetings attended by Council functionaries will take place at the Austria Center Vienna, which has designated permanent conference facility status.

The events held during the Austrian Presidency of the EU Council of the European Union will take place in areas that are clearly separated from the venue’s day-to-day conference activities. For security reasons, special clearance is required to enter the spaces reserved for the EU Council meetings. All other parts of the Austria Center Vienna will be available for regular event organisers and participants to use.

The presidency of the EU Council (also called the Council presidency) rotates every 6 months in a set sequence among the 28 EU member states. During this 6-month period, the presidency chairs meetings at every level in the Council, helping to ensure the continuity of the EU’s work in the Council.