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The first of July 2021 was a day we will remember for a long time: After more than a year on hold we could finally come together again (according to the 3G regulations) to celebrate our achievements of 2021, the restart of congresses in Austria and also ourselves.

After the COVID-19 outbreak decisions on rescheduling congresses had to be made. The following case study elaborates on how we took the chance and used the time to add more value to the community.  

As a professional congress organiser, we know the importance of continuous education. All year we are concerned with the organisation of educational events for our clients. Due to the pandemic these events have changed their channel and were shifted into the online world. We learned a lot and decided to test those lessons on ourselves. Therefore, we used this approach, applied it to our own education and took the chance to put more emphasis on the skill development of our employees. Barbara Skrott is director of national projects and person responsible for our training who will give you a little insight into the topic.

This year‘s St. Gallen International Breast Cancer Conference (SG-BCC) proved how a state-of-the-art conference always has the potential for further development. Due to the pandemic, the format had to be adapted. We took this chance to update the conference to a new high. How did we as a PCO achieve this? The following case study will explore another chapter in our quest of how to add spice to the monotone and isolated digital world of the pandemic.

The Cambridge Dictionary defines umami as “a strong taste that is not sweet, sour, salty, or bitter. It is often referred to as the fifth taste.” Umami is nothing as such new but appears to be the trend to make the culinary experiences richer. We borrowed the concept for our congresses:

Our team just got a new addition. We're excited to introduce our new colleague, Christa!

Over 2,000 participants joined this year’s Austrian vaccination day online. That’s more than three times the number of previous years and shows the current relevance of the topic around the SARS-CoV-2 vaccination. For us it was a day that also taught us a lot about human communication.

A year ago today no one would have guessed how 2020 would have developed. The pandemic and the related travel and event bans hit the congress industry incredibly hard. Some events got cancelled or postponed others were quickly transformed into full online formats. We are proud of what we have achieved together with our clients.

All areas in the congress world have been turned upside down by the COVID-19 pandemic, and the move to virtual meetings as a consequence has been incredibly challenging.

Organising international events can be an exciting and fulfilling experience, but it also requires a great deal of what is called “cultural competence”. Read on to find out how you can build cultural competence to work more easily with others.

The challenge

How to transfer a two and a half-day Austrian congress — with up to 6 parallel sessions per day, attracting 1,000 participants annually — to an online event? And also, how do you ensure that sponsors and exhibitors feel sufficiently represented?

Finding good speakers is tricky enough. So if they cannot come to your meeting in person, it can sometimes make sense to let them present remotely. Here's how it's done:

In recent months, nearly all major scientific congresses have been cancelled or held virtually. Live congresses are now possible again - yet with restrictions.