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Boston or Browser? Pharma Forum Goes Hybrid in September

The show’s return to the F2F format is set for Renaissance Boston Waterfront, where it will coincide with many of the happenings around Biotech Week Boston.

After 16 months of adapting and innovating in response to the Covid pandemic, the meetings industry has developed formats for events that would not have entered anyone’s mind at the start of 2020. Case in point: After a three-day virtual Pharma Forum in March, show organizer Informa Connect (MeetingsNet’s parent company) will host a second version of the event for 2021 that employs an interesting hybrid format. 

Specifically, September’s Pharma Forum will be a hybrid conference that focuses solely on the in-person audience segment for two days before focusing solely on the virtual audience for the following two days. As a result, the 17th annual Pharma Forum will happen in person on September 21 and 22 at the Renaissance Boston Waterfront, while the virtual event will happen September 23 and 24.

In addition to the benefit of life-sciences planners and suppliers being able to conduct face-to-face networking after more than a year without it, the in-person version of Pharma Forum offers broader networking opportunities as well. The reason: It will coincide with the first few days of Biotech Week Boston, another Informa Connect show that takes place from September 20 to 30 at the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center.

In 2019, BTB drew more than 4,000 scientific, technological, and business leaders in the biotech field to Boston. Pharma Forum attendees at the Renaissance Boston Waterfront will be within walking distance of BCEC as well as the Omni Boston and the Westin Boston Seaport District, two hotels that typically house many BTB participants. (Pharma Forum admission does not include admission to BTB, though.)

Interestingly, Informa Connect will host this year’s BTB in a hybrid format—but unlike Pharma Forum’s set-up, BTB’s virtual component will run at the same time as the in-person event.

An Agenda Reflecting the Present and the Future
Screen Shot 2021-06-14 at 6.02.36 PM.pngPharma Forum’s in-person content revolves around three themes: Embracing re-entry into the live-event environment; realigning resources and partnerships for the future of medical meetings; and expanding inclusivity and sustainability in medical events. There will be keynote sessions on both days as well as breakouts and small-group discussion sections, plus a reimagined exhibit hall with a layout that allows for social distancing and other Covid precautions. In fact, the entire show will follow the Informa AllSecure Standards playbook, which features enhanced health and safety protocols across each event element.

As for Pharma Forum’s virtual component, September 23 will feature a series of live presentations applicable to planners in North America, Europe, Asia, and elsewhere. On September 24, the show will broadcast recordings of its in-person educational sessions but with the presenters available live to answer questions in each session’s chat forum. There will also be one-on-one peer-networking opportunities powered by artificial intelligence; small-group real-time discussion forums; and a virtual trade show using scheduled appointments to match planners with hoteliers, technology vendors, and other suppliers.

Registration for Pharma Forum Fall 2021 
can be for both the in-person and virtual experiences or for the virtual event only. Both registration options are complimentary through Friday, August 6, for corporate, third-party,and association planners who commit to a minimum of eight appointments with suppliers.

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