Groundbreaking ICCA and Destination Canada survey explores how international associations and the global business events industry can re-align and re-focus on sustainability best practices

At a joint webinar on Thursday January 18th, ICCA and Destination Canada presented our groundbreaking survey on the integration of sustainability into business events, bringing key collaborators together online to focus on this essential industry-wide issue.

This extensive survey explored how associations and their event partners are engaging with sustainability, highlighting the integral role sustainability now plays in the issuing and actioning of Request For Proposals (RFPs). The live webinar featured:

Together they discussed key points raised in the survey and how these findings reflect the industry’s readiness - and willingness - to align with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs).

Key highlights included:

  • The willingness of associations/organisations to pay for more sustainable events
  • The challenges faced when planning sustainable events
  • The importance of communicating an event’s sustainability to attendees

Speaking of the report, ICCA CEO Senthil Gopinath stated: “Our ongoing partnership with Destination Canada - which I am delighted to announce is being renewed in 2024 - puts sustainability at the top of the ICCA advocacy agenda. By pursuing a proactive sustainability policy, and more crucially, applying tangible measures, our associations can align their goals with - and influence - the value proposition our members provide. Collating accurate data and analysis for discussion at a global level makes the messaging clear: we have the power to set an effective and engaging agenda that can and will reach far and wide.”

Destination Canada’s Executive Director Business Events, Virginie De Visscher, added:

“At Destination Canada, we are dedicated to elevating the environmental, socio-cultural and economic sustainability of the business events industry, in Canada and around the world. We are deeply thankful for our valuable partnership with ICCA, which shares our belief in investing in forward-thinking research to inform innovative, creative and collaborative solutions in a new era of sustainable travel. We hope this survey and its findings spark real change and enable us to build a brighter, more sustainable future together, so the global business events industry can continue to flourish.”

As our industry takes purposeful strides towards a more sustainable future, both ICCA and Destination Canada express a shared interest in continuing the conversation started by our joint report. Recognising that more can - and must - be done is a core value of both organisations and further discussion and collaboration can only lead to more positive action. We believe the webinar has served as a platform for reflection and will prove a catalyst for change. This is just the next step on a long road and we cordially invite stakeholders to join us as we build a more sustainable global business events industry.

Access the full report here.

For more information please contact

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About ICCA

ICCA is a global community and knowledge hub for the international association – and governmental – meetings industry. Founded in 1963, ICCA specialises in the international association meetings sector, offering data, education, communication channels, as well as business development and networking opportunities. Today, ICCA continues to advocate for the world of international meetings. The ICCA Association Community offers associations across the world education, connections, tools, and resources to help them organise more effective and successful meetings. 

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About Destination Canada

Destination Canada’s Business Events team is charged with growing Canada’s share of international business events by promoting the country’s unique meeting, convention, and incentive event possibilities. By driving awareness of Canada’s leading economic strengths and how local knowledge capital can elevate business events, Destination Canada’s Business Events team helps international  organisations meet with purpose in Canada.