ICCA Congress 2023

Rory Archibald, Senior Business Events Manager at 62nd ICCA Congress in Bangkok

Article published 13/12/2023

The 62nd ICCA Congress united the global community of event industry professionals for an invigorating week of learning and connectivity, working towards unstoppable change through the power of meetings.

From 12 to 15 November, industry professionals from around the world, including Rory Archibald, Senior Business Events Manager and Patrick Lamont, Business Events Policy Engagement Manager, convened in Thailand's capital.

The four-day event consisted of panels, discussions, and keynote speeches centring on the key belief that impactful socio-economic and environmental change begins with us.

Keynote speaker, Ban Ki-Moon, former Secretary-General of the United Nations (UN), addressed the congress and offered inspiring insights into his experience managing global change and developing the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG's).

The congress creates a platform for event professionals to convene, engage in discussions, strengthen existing connections, and forge new relationships. Destination organisations, associations and tradeshows presented their ideas via panel discussions which touched on a range of topics, including the UN SDG's, Generative AI, and sustainable travel.

A key element of the congress was the Sharing Hub sessions, which provided refreshing insights from different destinations on topics such as technology, sustainability, diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) and more. The Sharing Hubs offered a setting for people to engage in meaningful discussions, network with peers, and formulate ideas to build on the change that was being made at the congress.

ICCA is an important opportunity to connect with destinations around the world, offering a chance for reflection and to look inward to more local actions that are making a direct impact on our communities.

Speaking on his experience of the 62nd ICCA Congress, Patrick said: "This was my first time attending the ICCA Global Conference, and it was brilliant to spend four days networking with colleagues from around. It was great to hear conversations on legacy and to hear directly from major airliners on their ongoing efforts to increase biofuel use to power aircraft and move towards more sustainable travel. Bangkok was an incredible host city, vibrant and welcoming."

Rory said: "The ICCA Congress emphasised the need for sustainability in event planning and acknowledged the industry's commitment to this. However, there is a call to do more and be innovators in the industry to ensure its stability and progress.

"Key takeaways from the conference include embracing technological advancements, implementing strong DEI (Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion) strategies, and evolving sustainability frameworks in response to the ongoing climate crisis. I believe change is the way forward and embracing new voices and opinions will help us to evolve and adapt as an industry, shedding new light on to the experiences and insights we all share."