Associations World Congress undergoes expo revamp

The Association of Association Executives (AAE) is restructuring its Associations World Congress, matching delegates with exhibitors based on their specific event needs.

The event, which will now be known as the Associations World Congress & Expo, will take place 7-9 April 2019 at the Swedish Exhibition & Congress Centre in Gothenburg, Sweden.

In a new approach, delegates will be asked questions about their challenges and event needs during the registration process. In the lead up to the event, they will be introduced to exhibitors who can help them solve those challenges and host their events.

The recommended solutions will be based on the AAE’s knowledge utilising Eventfolio technology. A new engagement manager, Andrea Matthews, will be based at the association’s head office, and will work with delegates and exhibitors to support introductions.

The AAE’s Executive Director, Damian Hutt, says: “Our Associations World Congress & Expo is the leading event in the calendar for International, European and regional associations. Year-on-year we refresh the content and develop the formats but this year we are innovating at a whole new level.

“Introducing exhibitors according to delegates challenges and needs is a whole new approach and will be of great value. There is so much time wasted with delegates having to do this research with each exhibitor themselves and we can jump that stage and make their time much more efficient as well as helping them solve challenges they wouldn’t without the investment we are making and the new technology.”

The AAE is also introducing a new structure for educational content based on research into what parts of events delegates have been attending.

Aside from the keynote sessions, the three-stream format is retired and now in each one-hour period throughout the day there will be seven parallel talks on different topics and formats. Delegates will be able to select which to attend according to their needs and not feel they need to attend only one stream. Formats of the talks vary from presentations, facilitated discussions, crash-courses, briefings, case studies, and focuses. This new approach is more flexible, includes more choice and allows for more speakers and topics.

The congress will also be live webcast for remote delegates that are unable to be in Gothenburg, with a professional presenter hosting online.

Annika Hallman, Director of Gothenburg & Co Convention Bureau says: “We are very enthusiastic that the AAE is introducing new and exciting elements to the Associations World Congress & Expo, especially when it comes to boosting knowledge and new meeting formats and concepts. Participants will get to know a knowledge-based city where innovation and co-operation are in focus and Gothenburg also has a strong sustainability focus. We look forward to welcoming all AWCE delegates to our city.”