Today’s Coronavirus Tracker

Current updates on association response to the global COVID-19 crisis, along with a roundup of conference, travel, and business news and information.

Cancellation Challenges

While more than a quarter of associations with in-person events scheduled between May and December have yet to cancel them, cancellations are far more common—and many association pros are having trouble seeing the potential resumption of events before January.

That’s based on the latest data from the ASAE Research Foundation’s Association Snapshot 2.0, which finds that 28 percent of respondents with events scheduled between May 1 and December 31 have not canceled any events, while 71 percent have canceled at least one event—and more than a third (34 percent) have canceled three or more. (Most significant: 21 percent say they’ve canceled five or more events.)

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In a separate question, slightly more than a third of respondents (35 percent) could not see a resumption of events before January 2021, while a quarter suggested the earliest date for a resumption could be September (14 percent) or October (11 percent). Around 15 percent still saw the summer months of June (1 percent), July (6 percent), and August (8 percent) as a possibility, while 17 percent were not putting a date on a potential resumption.

A potential driving factor for those that have not canceled their events may be the need to offer refunds. The survey found that 46 percent of attendees were being offered a full refund for events taking place between May and December, while 32 percent were offering exhibitors the same. Other forms of refund—including partial refund, future event discounts, comp registrations, and future exhibitor space—were being offered at lower rates (20 percent combined for attendees, 29 percent for exhibitors).

Recent Headlines

What Is the Future of Vacations? (Skift, 05/21/20) “For travel industry folks, it may be easy—and indeed comforting—to assume that beyond the short-to-medium term upset, consumer demand will bounce back once safety and economic conditions improve. While there is plenty of evidence to suggest that pent-up demand exists, operating on that rosy assumption alone overlooks something rather unique about the COVID-19 crisis. Unlike a hurricane, a terrorist attack, or even the 2008 recession—and virtually every other modern precedent we can compare the current situation to—the pandemic is not defined to any particular place or time. It was (and is) in our airplanes, our schools, our offices, our governments, and even our homes. It’s affected our pocketbooks, our companies, our families, and our respiratory systems. It has, simply put, taken over our lives. So how will all of this impact that one constant staple of travel—the vacation?”

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The Hunt for a Work-From-Home Webcam Is a Story of Broken Supply Chains (The Washington Post, 05/21/20) “For years, consumers have gravitated toward newer, smaller, more mobile devices for life on the move. Just three months ago, webcams were turning into relics of the past. Sure, YouTube influencers and avid workers-from-home used them, but most of us relied on our built-in laptop cameras and smartphones for the few video chats we engaged in. But the coronavirus pandemic changed that as millions of people began to work from home and heavily rely on technology to keep in touch with family and friends.”

Tired of Being Stuck Inside? These Simple Hacks Can Bring Nature Into Your Home (Fast Company, 05/20/20)  “Our early ancestors evolved mostly outside in constantly changing natural environments. Yet the indoor spaces where we now spend much of our lives separate us from that world. One of the lessons of the current lockdown is that we may need to change that.”

Current Incidence Statistics

Source: Johns Hopkins Center for Systems Science and Engineering. Data sources include the World Health Organization, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, European Center for Disease Prevention and Control, and National Health Commission of the People’s Republic of China, as well as local authorities, medical sources, and news reports.