A day of lively debate and discussion was had as Scotland’s events and festivals industry came together on Monday (27 November) at this year’s National Events Conference: Setting the Stage for 2025.
Hosted by sports broadcaster, Eilidh Barbour, and held at Glasgow’s Technology & Innovation Centre, 42 expert speakers and a capacity audience gathered for the flagship industry conference to share best practice and discuss the challenges and opportunities facing Scotland’s events industry.
David Coletto from Abacus Data delivered a timely and thought provoking keynote speech, providing invaluable insight on understanding the future of events through the eyes of a millennial during his presentation ‘Disruption and Generational Change’; part of the opening plenary session, ‘The Changing Audience for Events’.
He gave the 300 strong audience three things to take away from his talk when thinking about millennials around events. Firstly they are a ‘do’ generation not a ‘have’ generation. They prefer experiences over owning goods. Secondly, it’s all about the experience. Millennials want a quality experience that is authentic, natural and value for money. And lastly, they want to be told a story but they want it to be authentic.
“From my perspective, there’s never been a better time to be in the events and festivals business.”
The day’s 11 break-out sessions also provided further opportunities for the industry to delve into the latest trends and issues facing the sector, with EventImpacts, the National Culture Strategy Consultation, Event Tech, Social Media as well as Security, Stewarding and Policing among the popular topics delegates engaged in.
Following the break-out sessions, the delegates came together for the closing plenary session ‘‘Scotland’s Assets & The Perfect Stage’, with five of the industry’s leading professionals discussing the assets that are the cornerstone of the country’s event strategy – our people, our cultural identify and heritage, our natural environment, our built facilities, and our signature events – and providing their perspective on the opportunities and challenges of continuing to deliver a strong portfolio of events that maximise these key assets to ensure sustainable impact and international profile for Scotland.
Building on the success of the previous conference in 2015, the 2017 event provided the industry with a forum to learn, share knowledge and network, allowing event practitioners to remain up-to-date and ensuring Scotland maintains its reputation as a world-leader in event development and delivery.
Paul Bush OBE, Director of Events, said: “The National Events Conference has been a great opportunity for our industry to come together and review the progress we’ve made so far with our national events strategy, Scotland the Perfect Stage, as well as discuss the challenges and opportunities we’re currently facing. The level of debate and discussion that has taken place throughout the day has been truly outstanding.”
You can download the printed programme below