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How Bad Was 2020? EIC Plans to Find Out

The Events Industry Council is gearing up for a global economic-impact study that will quantify losses from the pandemic.

It’s been more than two years since the Events Industry Council released the Global Economic Significance of Business Events study, and the world has been through a lot since then. As a result, the umbrella organization for the meeting and convention industry has set its sights on a similar study, with a twist.

In partnership with Oxford Economics, EIC announced a new research initiative on March 16 that will quantify the global events industry’s economic impact and, for the first time, the total losses experienced in 2020 as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The study, which EIC expects to be completed before the end of the year, will have three main goals:
• Understand the economic impact of events at a national, regional, and global level. The study will use 2019 as a benchmark and quantify event-related economic losses in 2020 due to the pandemic.
• Examine prospects for meetings and other events in 2021 and beyond, “including tactics and strategies being employed to accelerate the recovery.”
• Articulate how meetings and events can be a catalyst for economic recovery.
“Understanding those important data points will help with advocacy efforts as we navigate towards the recovery,” says EIC CEO Amy Calvert.

In addition to a global survey of meeting planners, venue managers, and exhibitors, the research will look at hotel demand and revenue statistics from market-research firm STR; data from a secondary traveler survey conducted by Longwoods International; existing studies on the economic impact of meetings; and country-level economic data.

EIC is currently raising funds for the project, looking for sponsors on both an enterprise and individual level. EIC will soon post a funding form with sponsor levels at its web site, but for now interested sponsors can email Amy Calvert.

“The past 12 months have taught us an important lesson,” said Mark Cooper, chair of the EIC Board of Directors and CEO of IACC. “It is critical
to be in a position to measure and articulate clearly the significance of business events both in our regions and globally.”

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