Combining Innovation & Cooperation for Meeting Success

Convening in Vancouver provides resources to align meeting content, including a network of partners and a thriving life science community.

To put on the premier scholarly event in radiology, the American Society of Neuroradiology looks for a host city that’s as innovative as the delegation it serves. Each year, the ASNR Annual Meeting & The Foundation of the ASNR Symposium brings together nearly 2,500 physicians and experts who are advancing the field of neuroradiology. It was only fitting that this year’s conference was held in Vancouver, where attendees were in proximity to one of the most influential life sciences communities in the world.

“There’s a lot of research that’s done that we get to benefit from in this arena, and a lot of education and a lot of networking too,” says ASNR Executive Director Mary Beth Hepp. Neuroradiology is a discipline that depends on collaboration, she says. Delegates got to see what that looks like in Vancouver, where research institutions, biotech companies, universities and more make up a thriving life sciences ecosystem.

A standout in this community is the Life Sciences Institute at the University of British Columbia. The institute is at the forefront of biomedical research, with nine such multidisciplinary groups exploring health and disease. Researchers at the LSI are leaders in precision medicine, investigating the treatment and prevention methods that will transform health outcomes for patients on an individual level.

Meeting planners worldwide are realizing the potential of hosting an event alongside such a valuable research center and other life sciences entities. The 17th American Pediatrics Healthcare and Infectious Disease Conference was recently held in Vancouver, convening more than 25,000 pediatric researchers and practitioners. This year alone, the American Academy of Pain Medicine, the International Society of Hematology, and the American Academy of Periodontology have made Vancouver their conference destination.

“Associations want to come to learn and connect with leaders and experts in their field, and if they know there are leaders that are doing great work in a particular city, it’s all that more compelling to be there,” says Claire Smith, Vice President of Sales and Marketing at the Vancouver Convention Centre and Chair of the Professional Convention Management Association Board.

Many associations have hosted their events at the Vancouver Convention Centre, an immense waterfront venue with mountain views. And in keeping with Vancouver’s commitment to sustainability, the convention space is thoroughly eco-friendly, with double LEED Platinum certification and the largest non-industrial green roof in North America.

Healthy, sustainable living is at the heart of life in Vancouver. The city’s residents enjoy being physically active, surrounded by natural beauty, as well as using a highly accessible transit system. Holding a life sciences event in a city dedicated to environmental- and health-conscious practices is a perfect match for meeting content.

Even though Vancouver is the most populous city in British Columbia, making connections among its numerous life sciences entities is easier than you might expect, thanks to robust cross-sector partnerships.

“When you have such a strong government, industry and academia together, it’s a perfect recipe for our business events team,” says Michael Drake, Director of Sales, Meetings and Conventions, Canada and international, at Tourism Vancouver.

Vancouver’s hospitality community is plugged into the local life sciences scene and can easily direct meeting attendees to experiential learning and networking opportunities that will elevate their conference experience. In fact, Tourism Vancouver’s Meeting and Innovation Network of Distinction (MIND) Partnership is comprised of various industry thought leaders who show fellow professionals the benefits of holding events in Vancouver. From making introductions to bringing in local government and academia, MIND Partnership is the leading organization that facilitates the connection between destination and meeting content.

The program is one facet of the multi-sector network that keeps Vancouver’s conference scene humming, and encourages visitors to return year after year. There’s so much to take in, but the city’s multi-sectoral network will ensure that your event offers attendees the richest possible experience.

“It’s the combination of an inspiring and and healthy environment with a passionate field and industry, and then a good tourism product that can support great numbers of visitors,” Smith says. “It all comes together to make a nice package.”

This article is brought to you by Business Events Canada. Learn more about planning your next life science event in Vancouver, or reach out directly to receive our knowledge maps, designed to help you determine exactly why Vancouver is the best fit for your meeting content.”