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Seoul and Copenhagen big winners in latest ICCA rankings

The rankings rank cities by number of delegates hosted as opposed to number of meetings

Pictured: Coex in Seoul

Vienna hosted more delegates at international association meetings than any other city last year, according to new figures published by the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA).

The Austrian capital, second in the traditional number-of-meetings-per-city rankings published by ICCA last month, welcomed almost 120,000 participants to 186 association meetings in 2016.

Paris, number one in the ranking by number of meetings, ranks seventh in the new list.

One of the biggest climbers was Seoul, which was only tenth in the number of meetings list (137 in 2016), which came second in the number of delegates rankings, hosting almost 105,000.

Copenhagen was another beneficiary of the new measurement, moving from fourteenth spot in the number of meetings rankings to fourth in the number of delegates list, hosting just under 100,000.

The top three countries by participants is the same as the ranking by number of meetings: USA is first with 400,000 participants, Germany is second with 280,000 participants and the United Kingdom is third with 230,000. Italy is two places higher in this ranking and takes fourth place and like the ranking by number of meetings, Spain is fifth.

ICCA CEO, Martin Sirk, said: “We can’t stress this point strongly enough: ICCA’s rankings are a snapshot of a moment in time of a database designed for sales and marketing purposes, for a very specific segment of the market, a segment moreover where decisions are made three to six years in advance. 

"Any destination wishing to accurately present its true performance in the international meetings field needs to complement the ICCA statistics and rankings with its own robust measurement of all meetings business won for the future and hosted in the past year. 

"With our ICCA Destination Comparison Tool, ICCA members can also extract data on meetings that are especially important for their destination, for example if they’re primarily interested in meetings of more than 1,000 delegates, or which are related to a particularly important segment of the association market, such as medical sciences – we expect to see many ICCA members communicating their rankings in these specific type of meetings, and not just relying on their position in our overall rankings”.

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