Pictured: MCI's Guy Bigwood
A new global sustainability ranking hopes to have more than 100 event destinations signed up to by 2020, following its launch.
Destination Sustainability Index (GDSI-Index), initiated by the Scandinavian Chapter of the International Congress & Convention Association (ICCA) and professional conference organiser MCI on
Thursday, aims to 'promote the
sustainable growth of international meeting destinations', by highlighting best
practices and responsible business tourism.
It will evaluate the
sustainability performance of cities and bureaus in four key areas - city
environmental strategy and infrastructure; city social sustainability
performance; industry supplier support (restaurants, hotels and convention
centres); and, convention bureau strategy and initiatives.
Sverrisdóttir, ICCA Scandinavia Chair and Director of Exhibitions and Events at
the Reykjavik Convention Bureau, said: “The meetings and events Industry
needs to be a champion for the development of local economies, the environment
and society. Participation in the Index helps bureaux and cities focus
attention on developing sustainability programs which can benefit us all in the
long run. Furthermore it also helps in terms of positive market profiling and
Carina Bauer, CEO of
the IMEX Group, added: “Our industry requires greater focus and efforts to make
sustainable events easier, cheaper and totally widespread. IMEX is proud to
support the development of our industry and this ground-breaking initiative to
pioneer sustainability globally for meeting and incentive destinations.”
Guy Bigwood, MCI
Group sustainability director and GDS-Index project leader, said: "Our
vision is to have over 100 cities benchmarking and collaborating together by
2020. Today I am pleased to announce we have 25 Scandinavian cities based in
Finland, Denmark, Norway, Iceland and Sweden, as well as our first wave of
global cities including Barcelona, Geneva, Stuttgart and Sydney."
Martin Sirk, CEO of
ICCA, said the GDS-Index would be be driven by destinations themselves.
this is an excellent platform for leaders in sustainability from every region
to showcase their policies and good practices, and for any destination to
swiftly improve their competitiveness," he said.