Associations challenged to think legacy as BestCities event returns

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A meeting of associations executives, destination managers, and meeting industry thought-leaders will meet in-person at the BestCities Global Forum next month after an 18-month hiatus.

The event, taking place December 2-5, in Madrid, Spain, will focus on legacy and inclusivity with delegates encouraged to commit to a more 'sustainable and socially equitable future'.

Sessions will be centred on legacy and impact, with a discussion on the options available for associations to collaborate with social entities and leave a positive impact on host cities.

This year’s event will include the Madrid Challenge, a collaborative effort between partner destinations and associations. On the first day, destinations will be invited to sign up for BestCities’ Commitments to a Sustainable Future, a collection of recently revised standards that strives to make a positive impact in the world. Associations can participate in several ways, such as incorporating legacy into their RFPs. Further details will be solidified in the lead-up to the forum

In addition to the Madrid Challenge, partners and associations can take immediate steps toward positive change by participating in “Engage for Good”, a fundraiser for the Spanish Red Cross. Delegates will earn points for event engagement, such as logging into the attendee app, posting to the digital EventStream wall, and joining the Madrid Challenge. Points earned will be channelled into financial support for the Red Cross, and the most engaged participant will win a special prize.

Lesley Williams, managing director of BestCities, said: “As we return to meeting our peers face-to-face, BestCities is eager to introduce the Madrid Challenge as a key legacy-building piece for Global Forum and a road towards social and environmental change. We’ve designed this year’s Forum with an eye towards offering associations and partner destinations plenty of education, inspiration and motivation to incorporate sustainability and inclusivity into future conference planning. United, we can spur notable change in the meetings industry and beyond.”

David Noack, director of Madrid Convention Bureau, added: “Madrid, as part of BestCities, has set itself for a long time the objective to value the impact of events beyond the merely economic. Participants will be able to experience what is legacy about and how we can improve the social, environmental, or working conditions of a destination through well-designed actions.”

James Lancaster
Written By
James Lancaster

AMI editor James Lancaster is a familiar face in the meetings industry and international association community. Since joining AMI in 2010, he has gained a reputation for asking difficult questions and getting lost in convention centres. Proofer, podcaster, and panellist - in his spare time, James likes to walk, read, listen to music, and drink beer.

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