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City earns £35m from business events

Edinburgh rises up rankings as conference venue

Dean Village, Edinburgh (photo by Terry Murden)

Edinburgh’s growing reputation as a conference location is reflected in a new ranking which shows the city rising eight places to 27 for international association meetings.

It the highest placing for Edinburgh in a decade in the listing by the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA). 

The city hosted 76 meetings recognised by the organisation last year, equating to more than £35 million in economic impact. 

Edinburgh’s ambassador programme, which celebrated its 20th anniversary last year, continues to play a significant role in the city’s ongoing success in winning competitive bids to host international meetings.

Overseen by Convention Edinburgh, part of Marketing Edinburgh, the 500 plus members represent the best of Edinburgh’s business, scientific and academic elite.  Each ambassador is committed to promoting Edinburgh as a centre of excellence. 

Other high-movers in the top 30 include Tokyo (21), Buenos Aires (17) and Helsinki (22).  Edinburgh has also moved up the ICCA European rankings from 20 last year to 18. 

Earlier this month, Convention Edinburgh announced a strong start to the year with five recent international bid wins, expected to generate more than £7m.

Elaine Miller, ambassador & association bid manager at Convention Edinburgh, said: “To have Edinburgh independently recognised as one of the top 30 international association destinations in the world is a huge achievement and a testament to the hard work of a city-wide team of business tourism professionals.

“The sheer diversity of associations that choose to host their meeting in Edinburgh last year is a reflection of Edinburgh’s growing global reputation as a leading hub of excellence across a huge range of fields, including life-science, informatics, sustainability and creative industries.”

City ambassador, Prof James Garden of Edinburgh Royal Infirmary, helped bring the Meeting of the European Surgical Association Congress to the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh last year.

He said: “Over the years, I have had the privilege of bringing several conferences to Edinburgh and been spoiled for choice by the variety of excellent venues. Edinburgh’s rich medical heritage and historic architecture, combined with an ever-increasing number of direct flights linking to international hubs, make it the ideal destination for a medical meeting.”


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