Contribute to the Industry Strategy 2020

The Beyond Tourism 2020 Steering Committee submitted its report to Government in December 2018. In January 2019, the Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment launched a consultation process to seek industry and governments’ views on the draft report. The next long-term tourism strategy will extend out to the year 2030. This consultation process will provide valuable insights in shaping the trajectory of Australia’s tourism industry.

The Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment, Senator the Hon Simon Birmingham, has just released the Committee’s Report to Government and launched a public consultation process. The report and details of the consultation process and timing can be found here

The purpose of consultation is to seek feedback on the Committee’s vision for the future of the tourism industry in order to formulate the next long-term tourism strategy.

Please be advised that an on demand webinar has been published which provides an overview of the Beyond 2020 Steering Committee and its report to Government. The PCO Association encourage you to share this throughout your networks.

In addition, registrations have now opened for a face-to-face industry roundtable consultation session to be held from 2.30 – 4pm on Friday 1 March 2019 in Launceston, Tasmania. This is to coincide with the Qantas Australian Tourism Awards that evening.

For industry associations, we encourage you to share these details with your members, particularly any who will be in Launceston for the Tourism Awards.

A reminder that the portal for written feedback will be open until 8 March 2019.

Join us for the 12th Annual PCOA Conference and Exhibition, International Convention Centre Sydney, 8 – 10 December 2019

BCEC’s Bob O’Keeffe appointed a Member of the Order of Australia

Bob O’Keeffe, general manager of the Brisbane Convention Centre

Bob O’Keeffe, general manager of the Brisbane Convention Centre

Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre general manager Bob O’Keeffe was appointed as a Member of the Order of Australia in this year’s Australia Day Awards for outstanding services to tourism and business in Queensland.

Australia’s longest serving convention centre general manager, O’Keeffe has been at the helm of the award winning Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre since it opened in 1995 and has been witness to an extraordinary era of growth and success for both the centre and Brisbane.

He has overseen more than 20,000 events, including the hosting of the 2014 G20 Leaders’ Summit, which have welcomed 17.7 million people through the doors.

Queensland Tourism Industry Development Minister Kate Jones described O’Keeffe as pivotal to Queensland’s tourism industry.’

“Bob is one of Queensland’s longest serving business leaders, a great achievement in its own right,” she said. “He is the reason that the Convention Centre has won 171 awards, which is more than five awards for every year he has been in charge. Our convention centre has been judged the world’s best in the AIPC APEX Awards 2016 – 2018.

“Today we recognise that Bob has received one of Australia’s highest accolades by joining the Order of Australia as a Member and in the 24 years he’s run the Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre Bob has been a pivotal figure in Queensland’s tourism industry.”

O’Keeffe said he was proud to be recognised in this way “for doing something I love”.

“I am extremely humbled by this award and hope it helps to shine the spotlight on the importance of the business events industry, which drives international visitors to our shores, showcasing Brisbane and Queensland to the world,” he said.

For more information on CIM business events click here

The 12th Annual PCOA Conference and Exhibition, will be held at International Convention Centre Sydney from 8 – 10 December 2019


PCOA18 Featured Speaker, Fast Future CEO, Rohit Talwar, provides five points on future tech

Rohit Talwar HeadshotArtificial Intelligence. We will see far more use of artificial intelligence (AI) across a range of industries and applications will emerge in the meetings sector. The technology will help with things like trawling for popular topics and emerging issues for conference content, through to identifying and targeting potential attendees who fit the ideal candidate profile. We’ll see AI being used for customer service chatbots, and in performing detailed multi-parameter evaluations of bids from different possible locations and venues for an event. Within events, AI in meetings apps can help with better matchmaking between attendees, and in searching for and providing relevant content to presentations – and also fact checking claims made by speakers.

Immersive Technologies. We’ll see far great use of technologies that enhance the multi-sensory immersive experience at events. We have grown used to seeing fun and engaging demonstrations with augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) in the exhibition area. In the near future, we’ll see entire workshop sessions or even plenaries where the technology is used to create a more immersive experience for some or part of the session. The aim will be to shift meetings and conferences from events where delegates are “spoken at” to more participative and engaging experiences that allow delegates to go deeper into the exploration of a scenario or issue.

Internet of Things. Growing use will be made of sensors, cameras, and tracking devices to monitor flows around an event and to provide deeper information to exhibitors about the visitors to their stands and what they spent time looking at. Effectively, we’ll see an Internet of Things (IoT) emerging within events – with lots of questions about the extent to which people are willing to be tracked and the rewards they will receive for agreeing to such monitoring.

Q. How can the events industry help shape or influence this future?

We see an accelerating pace of disruption, increasing complexity, and growing uncertainty to be at the root of many issues that businesses and organisations are addressing today and will continue to face in the emerging future. Events remain one of the most universally powerful ways of helping people learn about these changes, hear how others are responding, and explore the implications with their peers.

Exponential technology developments and the resulting disruptions they cause will create new challenges and opportunities for innovative business solutions. There will be tremendous potential benefits to be gained by those events that can tap into these drivers of disruption, provide choice and personalisation for how and when delegates can participate, and help people make sense of the resulting skills challenges and opportunities for their sector. As wicked problems become the norm, and tame problems the exception, events need to think about how they are adapting their design to help participants understand the challenges and craft well-thought out solutions.

With a growing array of event options and online alternatives, proving the value and relevance of our events will never have been more important. Increasingly, organisations are beginning to grasp that the future may look very different to the present, hence the growing interest in “future proofing”. This in turn is driving event owners to ensure they have genuinely forward-looking content and experiences that challenge participants, stretch their thinking, and open the door to new possibilities.

Q. Do you see the changes ahead as positive or negative for the events industry?

Almost every change on the horizon can be viewed from either a negative or a positive perspective. For example, on the one hand, confusion over Brexit may lead some organisations to postpone meeting plans while staff focus on the practicalities of the UK decoupling from the European Union. However, there will also be a massive growth in events focused on helping different sectors make sense of Brexit and determine the actions to take. The challenge is to have forward thinking people in the business who are looking at the issues on the horizon, and determining the potential impacts and opportunities that could arise – acting pre-emptively to create solutions rather responding to a crisis or rushing to respond to an opportunity when they emerge.

Q. How should we shift our mindset and leadership style in order to compete in this emerging future?

The first step is make sure that everyone is encouraged to be looking at the broader changes taking place or emerging today across society to understand what they might mean for the meetings sector. The next is to allocate some dedicated time to explore the longer term future. This means, for example, looking at the meeting needs and expectations of emerging generations. This also means looking at how the exponential technology developments we are already starting to see could impact our sector and society over the coming five, 10, 15, or 20 years. As an increasingly critical component of leading in a time of increasing disruption, futures thinking can play a critical role in helping leaders and their organisations come to terms with the nature of a rapidly evolving world.

Q. How can we harness this technology to our advantage in order to ensure a very human future?

In some sectors, there is a clear expectation that technology will automate roles and jobs and replace people – this may not be so apparent in the events sector. In a highly service oriented sector such as meetings and events, technologies such as AI will provide power tools to help in the design, marketing, and management of events. This should hopefully free up staff time for customer facing activities. The success of the sector depends on the quality of service combined with the capacity to understand and respond to the meeting and event needs of the marketplace. This requires human relationships, research, quality dialogues, and time invested to create the best possible event design – all of which suggest a very human future for the sector.

Published in micenet December eMag here

PCOA18 Featured Speaker – Sponsored by Tourism New Zealand

Join us for the 12th Annual PCOA Conference and Exhibition, International Convention Centre, 8 – 10 December 2019