Press release
19 May 2015

Sustainability: a competitive advantage

Frankfurt am Main, May 19, 2015. Sustainability initiatives are now considered an essential attribute in the event industry with more and more operators from Germany and abroad preferring suppliers who can demonstrate activities and recognition in this area such as a certificate of a sustainability management system.

 

This is a key finding of the Meeting & EventBarometer 2015, the only study in Germany that examines both the conference and events sectors. The initiators are the European Association of Event Centres (EVVC), the German Convention Bureau e.V. (GCB) and the German National Tourist Board (GNTB). The study was carried out by the European Institute for the Meetings Industry (EITW).


Sustainability ensures a higher quality of events

More than half of organisers in this year’s survey value providers with a sustainability certificate compared to just one third in 2011. For organisers this goes beyond a tick box exercise -35.6 percent of respondents believe that the sustainability efforts of providers are accompanied by a noticeable improvement in quality.


Almost every other provider with Sustainability Management System
Almost half (43.2 percent) of the surveyed providers have a sustainability management system in place - an increase of 16 percentage points compared to 2011 (27.4 percent).

"Sustainability has always been key and its importance has increased in recent years. As part of Germany’s leading position in this sector, the EVVC and GCB held the third Green Meetings and Events Conference in February this year which inspired some 400 delegates to incorporate more sustainable elements into the organisation of conferences, congresses and events”, explains Matthias Schultze, Managing Director of the GCB. The fourth Green Meetings and Events Conference is scheduled for 2017.


Accessibility awareness is anchored

German suppliers also highly aware of the issue of accessibility: around 80 per cent said that the issue is rooted heavily in its corporate philosophy compared to just over 60% of event organisers.
Providers have also implemented several practical steps - 93 percent of providers state that their venues are fully or partly accessible and more than half currently have measures in place for wheelchairs, allergies/intolerances and disabled people. These three groups are considered top priority. In terms of services for guests with hearing or vision difficulties, there is currently higher supply than demand.  


Communicate more deals
The study raises the need for greater communication – only half of the venues indicate the relevant accessibility information on their websites. This indicates much room for improvement with 65 percent of those surveying claiming this level of communication is insufficient.
"In terms of accessibility, the providers are very well positioned. However the best offers are worthless if they are not sufficiently communicated. Here, the study shows need for urgent action to ensure that the German suppliers clearly communicate their hard work on this important issue”, comments Joachim König, President of the EVVC.


The Meeting & EventBarometer 2015 is the only study in Germany that examines both the conference and events sectors. The initiators are the European Association of Event Centres (EVVC), the German Convention Bureau e.V. (GCB) and the German National Tourist Board (GNTB). The study was carried out by the European Institute for the Meetings Industry (EITW), partner for the ninth year running.

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