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May 25, 2009

Landmark events industry gathering calls for skills, unity and credibility

The first E-20 London Summit, held last week at the UK capital’s iconic venue the Natural History Museum, has called for a range of measures across the entire events industry to counter the recession and ensure it is well placed for the future.
The summit, made up of 20 of the leading brands in the events sector, gathered together to discuss a range of topics affecting the industry, and agreed to meet on a regular basis to move some of the initiatives forward and make positive changes to the sector.
Key outcomes of the summit covered three main areas, and included:
The industry has to retain is greatest talent during the downturn and resist the need to reduce staff numbers if it is to maintain its creative edge and remain a world leader in the creation of events.
The events sector has to collaborate more on a range of issues, while understanding that the various trade and professional associations have their own unique roles to play. Discussion on the creation of an ‘umbrella body’ for the wider industry is set to continue.
Further work has to be done to raise the profile of the industry to wider markets and government, highlight the business benefits of face-to-face communication and continue to attract talent into the sector. The group also called for credible research to back up its contribution to the UK economy.
Zoë Watts, head of events and catering at the Natural History Museum and chair of the summit, commented: “This is the first time I have seen such a high-profile group, representing everything that is outstanding about the UK events industry, come together in one place to discuss and debate the key issues affecting all of us.

“We didn’t change the world, but we did take some huge steps forward and agreed to continue to work together to make a positive impact on our industry.”
Updates on the E-20 Summit were Twittered throughout the evening and were followed by key people in the events industry.

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