Insights & Takeaways from the 2016 Sustainable Events Summit
We weren’t able to attend the Sustainable Events Summit (SES) in London, UK, this year, however we did make a point of following along as best as we could via Twitter. There wasn’t a whole lot shared online but we did manage to find a few key takeaways that we’d like to share with you below. We also take a look at the venue where it was held and the organizers who put it all together.
Naturally there was some excitement to start the day:
Fantastic to see so many event professionals here today at @global_ses #GSES2016. Looking forward to a great day! #eventprofs— GSES 2016 (@global_ses) November 21, 2016
Today is the day! Looking forward to seeing everyone at #GSES2016 in London very soon. Let's talk sustainable events. #eventprofs— Positive Impact (@PIevents) November 21, 2016
We're very excited to be welcoming lots of guests to our #London #Auditorium for the @global_ses #event #conference #GSES2016— 30 Euston Square (@30EustonSquare) November 21, 2016
The (Untapped) Storytelling Power of Events
The first panel, entitled “How can we encourage event professionals to tell their sustainability stories?” revealed some interesting insights.
@Conference_News @Access_AA & @CITmagazine educate on how event professionals can tell their #sustainability stories #GSES2016 pic.twitter.com/GwIivIFURZ— Banks Sadler (@Banks_Sadler) November 21, 2016
For instance, a live poll of the audience during the panel revealed that “media [is] creating pressure for brands to demonstrate [their] sustainability [credibility],” more than other sources:
Where does pressure to show you have it right come from? Audience says media. Panel thought society would be top #GSES2016 @global_ses— Nadine Dereza (@nadinedereza) November 21, 2016
Media creating pressure for brands to demonstrate sustainability creds according the @global_ses audience - agree? pic.twitter.com/SaRVL36fVw— Jane Hague (@jlhague) November 21, 2016
Interestingly enough, it was then shown that only 18% of events publicly share their sustainability reports:
Shameful! Only 18% of events #share their #sustainability reports #GSES2016 need to practice the #sharingeconomy pic.twitter.com/DHwXFvgBPt— Benita Matofska (@benitamatofska) November 21, 2016
We agree! In our opinion, only with greater transparency across the event sustainability sector can we learn and progress with the urgency that we need to on this issue. We have to be open with each other about our successes and failures!
Creativity + Sustainable Events
Later in the day was panel regarding the place of creativity in sustainable event planning.
Is sustainability a barrier to creativity? We think not! Let's hear from @FIAformulaE @benitamatofska @SmyleCreative @AnglianWater #GSES2016 pic.twitter.com/7gICKLEQ4M— Positive Impact (@PIevents) November 21, 2016
There wasn’t much shared about this panel via Twitter, however based on our experience, sustainability can be a boost for creativity. It’s such a deep and rich topic, and inspires so many people to action.
SES 2016 Research Project
And the research has been released! @global_ses #eventprofs #sustainability #GSES2016 pic.twitter.com/uQJQBaiSmw— Positive Impact (@PIevents) November 21, 2016
Here is a snapshot of the report:
- 61% of respondents think the environment is the most important section of sustainability
- Only 18% said they shared or published their event’s sustainability reports
- 81% of respondents said sustainability is not a barrier to creativity
- 56% measure the sustainability of their event
- Brands understand that sustainability is vital for their business success but this understanding does not consistently carry through to the delivery of their events
- Event professionals do not think sustainability is linked to a specific label
You can find more information regarding the research, plus instructions for purchasing the report, on the Sustainable Events Summit’s website.
Responsible Catering, Sustainable Food
The rest of the day seemed to have some interesting presentations and a little humour too…
Humour can be a good way to get a message across. Eat local! #GSES2016 @Sivigliaberto @DeltaLloyd #sustainability #eventprofs pic.twitter.com/3u0TNQdH3A— Positive Impact (@PIevents) November 21, 2016
Which added some levity to the more serious topic of sustainable food and catering:
Sustainable catering for a better tomorrow from @DeltaLloyd @Sivigliaberto @global_ses— 30 Euston Square (@30EustonSquare) November 21, 2016
Very inspiring#GSES2016 pic.twitter.com/xT1aFacwbe
Altogether it seemed like a very inspiring day and we sure wish we could have attended ourselves. Maybe next year!
"Access what you need, pay for what you use" @benitamatofska on the #sharingeconomy @ #GSES2016 @global_ses pic.twitter.com/l5wZTOaBeM— Speakers Corner (@Speakers_Corner) November 21, 2016
Fantastic to hear from @SkyUK on sustainability and what they think is important. @global_ses #GSES2016 #Sustainability @skybiggerpic pic.twitter.com/VL3U7DPz5J— Positive Impact (@PIevents) November 21, 2016
Time to hear more about what the research means @global_ses from @skybiggerpic @Sivigliaberto @DeltaLloyd #events #sustainability #GSES2016 pic.twitter.com/mIO7UFpCmI— 30 Euston Square (@30EustonSquare) November 21, 2016
The Venue – 30 Euston Square
The summit took place at the 30 Euston Square special events venue in London, UK. On its website, the venue emphasises its commitment to “CSR & Environment” and does appear to have well thought out corporate social responsibility guidelines and sustainability policies.
Sustainable Events Ltd. and its closely related non-profit offshoot, Positive Impact, partner with creative agency Smyle. Sustainable Events Ltd. and Positive Impact have been leading advocates of event sustainability in the United Kingdom and across the globe for several years.
Of particular note, Positive Impact has been championing the #shareapositiveimpact hashtag on Twitter – “a global campaign for people to share inspirational examples of sustainability in action in the event industry.”
Leave a Reply