Those of us in the business events industry have long believed in the power of our sector, but it has not been quantified, until now. $1.5 trillion — the estimated global spend of the business events industry, according recent Events Industry Council (EIC) research — is a lot to wrap your head around. Consider this: If the business events industry were a country, its GDP would rank between Australia and Russia — that is to say, it would be the 13th largest in the world.
We know that business events are more than just a means for people to meet face-to-face; we are a powerful platform for global economic and social progress. Now backed by the results of the “2018 Global Economic Significance of Business Events Study” — conducted by Oxford Economics on behalf of EIC and supported by the PCMA Education Foundation, the MPI Foundation, Hilton, and IMEX — we can begin to help those outside the business events industry grasp what we’ve known all along.
It’s a pivotal moment for the business events industry, and one I believe will further improve our profession, our purpose, and our world.
The economic significance study results highlight how the industry has changed and gives us an opportunity for self-reflection. Business events continue to experience disruption in the forms of consolidation, budget constraints, governmental policies, the audiences we attract and way we provide content, and even as a result of climate change.
I am confident that together we will construct innovative solutions to overcome these hurdles. It’s why we make sure that PCMA continues to evolve, so that we can meet the professional and personal needs of our community by producing even stronger education programs and networking events. It’s why the theme for our annual Convening Leaders event next month in Pittsburgh is “Disrupt & Deliver.”
Still, we understand that there is much more work to be done. That is why PCMA will continue to share the message that business events play an integral role in global economic and social transformation.
We know that our industry already is engaging differently than a decade — or even a few years — ago. For example, many events make meaningful corporate social responsibility initiatives part of their event programs. Those kinds of contributions may be more difficult to quantify economically, but they do add up and serve to demonstrate our industry’s ability to make the world a better place.