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1,300 delegates in town

Big win for EICC as TED Summit heads to capital


Neil Brownlee (left), head of business events, VisitScotland, with Marshall Dallas and Amanda Ferguson 


Scotland has fought off stiff competition from around the globe to host one of the world’s biggest gatherings of thought leaders.

The Edinburgh International Conference Centre will host the next TEDSummit, part of the TED network, from 21 to 25 July 2019, bringing together up to 1,300 members of the international TED community. 

The bid was led by the EICC, VisitScotland Business Events, Convention Edinburgh, and Scottish Enterprise, backed by support from the Scottish Government, the Lord Provost of Edinburgh, the University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh Napier University, Social Bite, Festivals Edinburgh, Edinburgh Science Festival and the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations.

TED is a non-profit organisation devoted to identifying, and then spreading, relevant and potentially impactful ideas. It began in 1984 with a conference converging technology, entertainment and design and over time the organisation has expanded its topics from science to business to global issues. 

TEDSummit gathers the most engaged members of the global TED community for community brainstorms, discussions, performances, workshops, outdoor activities and an eclectic programme of main stage talks.

The EICC previously hosted TEDGlobal from 2010-2012 and believes it can benefit from hosting this ‘trophy’ event. 

“For a big multi-day TED event we need a very specific type of location”, says Bruno Giussani, the Global Curator of TED and coordinator of TEDSummit, who knows Edinburgh well for having curated the previous TEDGlobal events. 

“It isn’t sufficient to just have a beautiful and strong theatre infrastructure – which the EICC provides. We look at the cultural atmosphere of the place, and at all the spaces that we will use – including hotels, restaurants, events and celebration venues and exhibition spaces – as creating a sort of virtual campus that our attendees will be able to experience over several days, moving from one venue to the other by foot, engaging with and immersing themselves in the city”. 

Edinburgh, he added, “offers this atmosphere in spades, and we look forward to bringing the TED community to town.” 

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said: “With our history, culture and wealth of experience of hosting world leading festivals, Edinburgh is the ideal location for TedSummit 2019.

“This international event will be an opportunity to show off Scotland as a home of innovation and of creativity and to build on our reputation as a place to visit, to live and to develop new ideas.” 

Marshall Dallas, chief executive, EICC: “We are beyond excited to welcome TED to our venue, city and country in 2019.”  

Amanda Ferguson, head of business tourism at Marketing Edinburgh, said: “Edinburgh is renowned for attracting the great minds of the world, encouraging innovative thinking and inspiring debate, so it is entirely fitting that we welcome this unique, global initiative to our capital.”


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