EUROPE - James Woudhuysen, a professor at De Montfort University in the UK, ignited some big future thoughts at the EIBTM Forum, 18 November, the curtain raiser to the tradeshow opening in Barcelona today (19 November).
The presentation, delivered at the Palau de Congressos, Fira Montjuic, took on issues ranging from making the most of IT to enhance content while not indulging youth or going in for gimmicks.
“Adults should get students to stand on the shoulders of giants,” said Woudhuysen, who advocated a kind of ’tough love’ education. “Don’t go after superficial popularity, but give them the best,” was his message.
“Intellectual leadership will stem the trend for sectoral associations to atrophy,” the professor added.
The presentation was a little disjointed at times, skipping over a lot of ground, but there was a speaker who at least had done his homework on the meetings industry and who littered a standard futurology presentation with some smart messages tailored for conference professionals.
Rather than a Q&A, the professor invited debate and had clearly ruffled one or two feathers in the audience by the end.
The Forum also saw two awards presented. First, former UK Member of Parliament John Greenway, now a consultant for Brook Green DMC, was presented with the Profile and Power Award by Philippe Fournier on behalf of the Joint Meetings Industry Council (JMIC).
Second, Patrick Delaney, Vice-President of Industry Relations at MCI Group was presented with the EIBTM 2013 Lifetime Achievement Award.
Presenting the award to Delaney, Graeme Barnett, Reed Travel Exhibitions’ Senior Exhibition Director, said: “The timing is right for us to recognise Patrick’s enormous contribution to our industry. His passion, commitment and enthusiasm are endless and I know that his unique style and personality has endeared him to the many people he has met and worked alongside during his travels around the world.”
Eric Rozenberg, Chair of Reed Travel Exhibitions, added: "He relentlessly and positively impacts our industry whilst at the same time entertains us all with his unique Irish sense of humour."
“I’m uncharacteristically speechless, and genuinely humbled, to be recognised by such a global powerhouse as Reed Travel Exhibitions for this Lifetime Achievement Award," said Delaney. "It’s a huge privilege to work in such a dynamic industry where I’ve learned so much and made so many lifelong friends. But there’s life in the old dog yet and lots more achievements to pursue as the next chapter of a career in this amazing industry unfolds.”
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