International Convention Centre (ICC) Sydney CEO Geoff Donaghy says that convention centres need to take a more active role in advocating the economic and social impacts of business events. He shares why and how:
Convention centres are major investments for owners, who are mostly governments, and the events they host have a significant impact on host communities.
Venue managers, therefore, have a shared role in advocating the economic and social impacts of business events. Enormous progress has been made but there will always be more to do at global and local levels.
To acknowledge this, International Convention Centre Sydney recently launched a measurable Legacy Program to strengthen Sydney’s knowledge economy and support local businesses with tangible commercial benefit.
Designed to connect industry leaders from a diverse cross-section of the local community, the programme supports the creation of impactful end-to-end experiences across four key streams: Innovators and Entrepreneurs, where industry-specific start-ups can showcase their ideas as part of an event programme; Generation Next, working with tertiary education institutions across Sydney to engage students; First Australians, celebrating and showcasing the culture of local Indigenous groups; and Sustainable Events; measuring the ecological impact of events and working with clients to ensure sustainable choices are made during the planning process.
Optimising financial outcomes for owners and delivering economic benefits to the host city is critical to business success, but when it comes to creating a lasting legacy, venue managers worldwide are taking their broader social obligations far more seriously.