Friends on Salisbury Crags in Edinburgh © VisitScotland/Kenny Lam
Article published 30/05/2023
Glasgow and Edinburgh are the UK's second and third most popular events destinations, with only London ranking above them in the UK, according to the latest ICCA Country - and City - rankings. Released on 23rd May 2023, the latest edition of the annual report tallies the number and location of international in-person association meetings held across the globe in 2022.
Glasgow ranks 27th in the world for number of international association meetings held (54) and Edinburgh ranks 30th with 52. This puts the two cities ahead of some of the world's leading destinations including Washington DC, Tokyo, Geneva, Dubai and Sydney. The United Kingdom ranked 6th overall, with 449 meetings taking place in 2022.
The rankings show a drive towards more in-person meetings in 2022 as the value and benefits of meeting face-to-face came to the fore post pandemic.
Commenting on the results, Rory Archibald, Associations & Sectors, VisitScotland Business Events, said: "We are delighted to see Glasgow and Edinburgh appearing so high in the 2023 ICCA Country - and City - rankings. The report shows that our reputation for pioneering industries, world-leading innovation and cutting-edge research continue to attract large conventions and congresses from across the globe.
"We are continuing to build on this success and further develop what is an already impressive offer for association meetings. Our real focus is on building on our Journey to Change campaign, as we remain committed to highlighting how business events can and should act as a driver for social, environmental and economic transformation and, in doing so, help to build a better future for communities."
As part of Journey to Change, VisitScotland Business Events recently launched The Transformation Protocol, an initiative that aims to facilitate connections between event organisers and national Scottish partners who are not already involved in the event.
The protocol is a collaborative national initiative that will include VisitScotland, city convention bureaux, key conference centres and venues, PCOs and inbound event organisers. By understanding the drivers, motivations, and key areas of expertise for inbound events, VisitScotland Business Events will be able to connect event organisers and key delegates with national partners, including innovation and research centres, policy leads, industry bodies, social enterprises and business leaders.
As part of the new initiative, VisitScotland Business Events will facilitate a wide range of support to organisations bidding for events, from bid stage to delivery stage, including bid support and endorsement; collaboration on a transformation agenda; knowledge exchange meetings and sector and industry introductions.