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As the global events industry is in a hiatus, those of us not being consumed by the pivot to virtual have had time to think more deeply about sustainability and how that might be applied to events as we move out of this global crisis. It is obvious that moving forwards, events must be purpose-led and responsibly address four key concerns: covid-safe, climate impact, single use plastic, and inclusivity.
Off the back of our Global Hackathon people have been inspired to get their house in order and establish their credibility and qualifications for sustainable event management, ready to produce responsible and purpose-led events into the future.
Becoming a member of the SEA has allowed me to connect and learn from some of the brightest minds in the sustainability and events space, something I hope to continue as a SEA-accredited event sustainability specialist.
Completing the accreditation has enabled me to gain an in-depth understanding of a wide range of sustainability issues, from ethical and sustainable supply chains through to energy and water conservation; responsible waste management; social innovation; or sustainable travel. I have really enjoyed this practical learning experience which I have already applied, and will continue to use in my sustainability work.
We are pleased to introduce you to the newest cohort of Sustainable Event Alliance Accredited Professionals.
Specialists are recognised for their up-to-date knowledge and experience within the field of sustainability in event management and their competency to advise, assess or train others.
Practitioners are events professionals with skills and competency in sustainable event management that demonstrate they are able to apply this to their event production roles.
The SEA Accredited Professional programme independently assesses event professional's knowledge and application of sustainable event management best practice. Applicants must meet pre-requisites to apply.
As a partner of the Awards, the SEA pulled together an expert team to develop the judging criteria and submission questions for the Sustainable Event Awards program. This work involved extensive discussion and deep-seated consideration, which the team believe will help position the Sustainable Event Awards as the premier sustainability awards for the events industry globally. The SEA Leadership Team will also contribute a number of event sustainability professionals who’ll form part of the judging panel for the inaugural Awards.
The global events industry has arrived at a true inflection point.
We, as event professionals, have acknowledged that each of us and our events have the power to influence positive change, and that the economic impact of our events are just the tip of the proverbial iceberg (what’s left of it that is!).
We’ve realised our role in achieving sustainable development, tuned in to the triple bottom line, and now we’re holding ourselves and others to account in the race towards sustainability.
After more than ten years of advocating for sustainable event management, industry development and capacity building, the Sustainable Event Alliance has witnessed a monumental shift within the sector towards sustainability and, while we’re just getting started, we believe this is cause for celebration!
We are excited to be part of the Awards, which has rigorous assessment criteria, designed to shine a light on the truly global leaders in event sustainability excellence. We look forward to reviewing, acknowledging and celebrating this excellence, across a terrific range of event sectors and supplier categories.”
The Sustainable Event Alliance encourages members, and those who are currently taking responsible action, to enter the Awards and use it as an opportunity to:
1 April – Entries open
30 June - Entries close
July - Finalists announced via the Awards website
1 September - Winners announced (virtual awards night)
The awards program consists of three overarching categories: Events, Venues and Suppliers and more than 60 sub-categories including:
To view the full list of categories please click here.
Judging criteria aligns with the the Sustainable Event Alliance's Membership Charter and covers four key areas:
Unless stated otherwise, each entry should focus on work completed or projects undertaken between 1st January 2019 and 30th June 2020.
Entrants will also be required to provide:
Give examples of top management leadership, engagement with staff and stakeholders, provision of resources and support, and how you bring the required knowledge for good decision-making into your team. How have you communicated your commitments and intentions to your stakeholders including suppliers, event attendees and community?
The judges will be looking for evidence that top management are driving or supporting this, and that the sustainability programme is led, endorsed and supported by them and they are actively engaged. Judges would also be looking for evidence and examples of communication with internal and external stakeholders, including the commitments, policies and how they can get involved.
Give examples of your inclusion, diversity and accessibility initiatives, for your organisation as well as through the event experience by attendees and community. Include examples of how this is ensured through responsible governance and provide examples of how it is enacted through your sourcing, contracting and production decisions. Give examples of the programmes, initiatives or support of those run externally that are beneficial to more than the organisation (eg campaigns or missions you care about, amplify and support). Describe how you use your platform for good.
The judges will be looking for programmes which connect to the community, leave a positive legacy, are enacted through the purchasing decisions, and strong frameworks for corporate governance. Additional consideration will be given for events that use their platform for good, by aligning with and amplifying relevant causes or campaigns.
Include examples of production processes to reduce impacts or resource use in the areas of materials, energy, water, travel and transport and materials management and resource recovery.
The judges will be looking for excellence in circularity and avoidance of single-use items, GHG balancing, local site and biodiversity protection, and ensuring no complicity through the supply chain.
Give examples of your objectives, target and KPIs, describe any baseline measurements undertaken, and detail the measurement and performance tracking systems you have in place. Give examples of improvements, reductions, and other performance achievements and excellence.
The judges will be looking for robust frameworks for performance measurement, possibly aligned with existing protocols; disclosure of performance through published reports, actual reductions/performance/improvement achieved, and the sharing of lessons learnt.
this is a test
11th September 2019
This partnership will provide support for MEA members to learn about sustainability issues management for events and provide access to SEA’s resources. This includes how-to-guides and resources, up-to-date information on recent advances in sustainable event excellence, discounted access to online training in sustainable event management and implementing ISO 20121 the international standard in sustainable event management.
MEA members keen on sustainable event management also have the chance to network and share learnings with event sustainability specialists from across the globe. The SEA has an Accredited Professional programme which is accessible to MEA members, and event producers that are members of MEA and the SEA could be listed in the Sustainable supplier database if their services include sustainable event management.
Robyn Johnson, CEO of MEA, commented, “MEA is very pleased to be partnering with the Sustainable Event Alliance. While we have checklists to help guide event practitioners towards sustainability, this partnership will provide our members with a great opportunity to work with a global organisation that is continually working in this space refining best practice and training the industry worldwide to meet ISO standards”.
SEA will offer MEA members an annual fee of AUD$75 to join regardless of organisation type, (individual, event, supplier, venue). Organisations and events can use the SEA logo once the sustainability charter has been signed and membership dues are paid. SEA has created a specific MEA information page.
Meegan Jones, Chairperson of the SEA, commented, “We are extremely happy to welcome members of MEA on their sustainability journey. Sustainable event management is now a must-take and a skill all events professionals need to acquire. We are looking forward to supporting the MEA and its members to build capacity in this area, and through our competency accreditation program give clients and employers the confidence that the sustainability management of their events are in safe hands.”
MEA is working with SEA to develop a general sustainable event management training course that it hopes to launch before the end of the year.
MEA is an Australian, independent not for profit organisation dedicated to servicing the needs of the meetings & events industry and promoting professionalism and excellence in all aspects of meetings and event management.
SEA is committed to advancing and promoting sustainable development through the delivery of events and to unite event professionals across the globe to work towards increased attention and knowledge of sustainability in event management.
For further comments please contact:
Meetings & Events Australia
(02) 99295400, firstname.lastname@example.org
The Sustainable Event Alliance is proud to announce the newest cohorts to the SEA Accredited Professional program are from Greece, Italy and Portugal – proving that sustainable event management is being embraced across the globe.
SEA Accredited Professionals are recognised for their up-to-date knowledge and experience within the field of sustainability in event management and their competency to advise, assess or train others.
Anastasia Zotou specialises in sustainable sports events providing organising committees with the appropriate knowledge on how to reduce negative impacts as well as raising environmental awareness to all stakeholders and participants.
Luca Guzzabocca has more than 15 years of experience in sustainable procurement and supply management. Since 2013 he has developed a sustainable event framework for the International Federation of Motorcycling (F.I.M) specifically for motorcycling. He is advisor for the Italian Mugello and Misano circuits for MotoGP events.
Dora Palma is an in-house sustainability manger at Rock in Rio – a music festival which occurs in Portugal (Lisbon), USA (Las Vegas), Brazil (Rio de Janeiro), and Spain (Madrid), and is responsible for the ISO 20121 implementation, develop mobility projects, solid waste management plan, carbon footprint calculation and offset projects, and the sustainability action plan.
About the SEA Accredited Professional Programme:
Prerequisites to become an SEA Accredited Professional are:
Candidates undertake a 75-question online competency assessment, which is anonymously peer-reviewed by fellow SEA Accredited Professionals. Once assessed and approved, candidates are asked to contribute new knowledge to the sector and SEA members.
The new and updated Powerful Thinking Guide provides event professionals with up-to-date knowledge and practical resources to help manage temporary energy smartly, reducing environmental impacts and fuel bills.
It is created from a collection of modular resources, factsheets and case studies that are also available online. This edition is European in focus, reflecting both the progress being made across Europe on this topic, and the partners involved with the guide’s content.
Since the first edition of the guide in 2012, a significant shift towards more efficient energy management has taken place in the events industry. Events are typically able to save between 10% and 50% of their fuel consumption and there are many examples that illustrate how and where this has been achieved in the new guide.
September 13th, 2016 by Freeman
Freeman, the leading global provider of brand experiences, announced today it has received the prestigious ISO 20121 Event Sustainability Management System certification, the first in its industry to do so on a global scale. The certification is an international standard designed to help organizations involved in the events and hospitality industries integrate sustainability into management practices and processes.
“Environmental and social responsibility has always been at the heart of Freeman and guides our business,” said Jeff Chase, vice president of sustainability for Freeman, who oversees the company’s sustainability initiatives and led the certification effort. “This certification – an industry first – reflects the philosophy of our founder, Buck Freeman, and is a tribute to the over 7,000 employees who strive to create sustainable events for our clients,” added Carrie Freeman Parsons, Freeman’s vice chair. First introduced at the 2012 London Olympic Games, ISO 20121 provides a management blueprint to address the “triple bottom line” of sustainability – the economic, environmental and social impacts of events. The standard helps organizations operate in a way that is financially viable for the company, its customers and suppliers; minimize the use of resources and reduce waste; and consider the needs and expectations of those affected by the event or business. A key component is the development of a continual improvement plan, which is then implemented, analyzed and modified to achieve ever-increasing standards of performance.
Dr. Glaesser, Director for the Sustainable Development Programme of the World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO), emphasised in his keynote speech at the conference that the meetings industry could act as "agents of change".
UNWTO sustainability expert Dr. Dirk Glaesser underlined the importance of sustainability for the meeting and event industry at the recent green meetings and events conference (gme) held in Germany.
Barbara Hendricks, Germany’s Federal Minister for the Environment, joined the conference via video link adding: "Germany is Europe's number one conference location – a great accolade and I warmly congratulate the industry. With success, however, comes responsibility. For the conference and congress industry this means, above all, implementing the guiding principle for sustainable development and sustainability targets at meetings, events and conferences. This sector has recognised - earlier than many other sectors - that sustainability is not a theme but an inherent feature."
Joining keynote speaker Dr. Dirk Glaesser was Professor Andreas Löschel, Professor for Energy and Resource Economics at the University of Münster, who highlighted how sustainability is a crucial consideration for the meeting and event industry. This year the UNWTO is shining the spotlight on this issue - the United Nations 70th General Assembly has designated 2017 as the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development.
The fourth green meetings and events conference (gme) took place 13 - 14 February in Waiblingen in the region of Stuttgart and attracted 250 attendees. The theme of the bi-annual conference was corporate social responsibility. Representatives from venues, conference hotels, congress centres, service providers and event agencies explored this theme through lectures, interactive workshops and excursions, agreeing that sustainability is a core feature of the conference industry and at the same time can act as a stimulus for other sectors.
Gme organisers Ilona Jarabek, Vice-President of the European Association of Event Centers (EVVC), and Matthias Schultze, Managing Director of the German Convention Bureau (GCB), summarised: "Over the past two days participants have come together to make significant progress in the sustainable organisation of conferences, conferences and events in Germany. We are already looking forward to the next conference in 2019! "
The Greeneetings and events conference (gme) is organised by the European Association of Event Centers (EVVC) and the GCB German Convention Bureau eV and was launched in 2010. The aim of the event is to focus on aspects of sustainability in event management and to establish sustainable action by all participants in Germany’s event sector.
read more at traveldailynews.com
July 18, 2016: GOLD COAST, QLD, AUSTRALIA
The Sustainable Event Alliance (SEA) congratulates Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games Corporation (GOLDOC) for implementing an effective and rigourous event sustainability management system in conformity to international standard ISO 20121.
The SEA conducted an independent and external review (‘Second Party Conformity Assessment’) of GOLDOC’s compliance to ISO 20121: Event Sustainability Management Systems.
ISO 20121 was launched in 2012, after several years of development and is fast becoming the accepted benchmark for events across the globe. Implementing an event sustainability management system ensures that the organiser is not just considering sustainability on paper or dealing with sustainability issues in an ad-hoc way, but that consideration for operating a responsible and sustainable event is embedded throughout all the organisation’s operational areas, its supply chain and for the entire project lifecycle.
The standard requires that top management is committed to sustainability and that issues across a broad spectrum are considered – environmental, social responsibility and socio-economic concerns. An additional consideration is building in legacy, in terms of ongoing benefits to the local community and transfer of knowledge into the event and sports industries and supply chain.
In undertaking the independent review, it was apparent that GOLDOC is showing it’s serious about the potential environmental and socio-economic issues and opportunities in putting on this mega sports event. Their intent is backed up by an approach that will ensure all facets of GOLDOC operations will have sustainability management at their heart. The systems established to operate the Games ensure that the sustainability team can engage with all functional areas of the operation, and be confident that the ambitions set for sustainability performance of the Games can be successfully met.
This Second Party Conformity Assessment of GOLDOC marks the Sustainable Event Alliance being open for business in offering an independent audit service for event organisation’s ISO 20121 system implementation.
Second Party audits are an effective and affordable option for organisations serious about an independent review of their sustainability framework.
The audits are conducted by SEA Accredited Professionals with expertise and a proven track record in event sustainability, and hold training and competency in ISO 20121 implementation and auditing.
Read more about 2nd party audits here: sustainable-event-alliance.org/second-party-audit
The Sustainable Event Alliance has created a Global ISO 20121 Registry for all organisations, events and venues claiming conformity to ISO 20121. The ISO 20121 Registry allows those that have undertaken a conformity assessment to log their details including scope of management system, date, audit level achieved, auditing body competency, and to upload a case study or other information to share with industry peers.
View the registry: sustainable-event-alliance.org/iso20121_registry
The Sustainable Event Alliance provides self-paced online training courses in ISO 20121. Specifically: