IBTM World celebrates the power of innovation as industry influencers take to the stage

IBTM World 2023, which returns to Fira, Barcelona from November 28 to 30 has announced Julius Solaris and Christine Renaud as its final keynote speakers, bringing innovation to the fore of its dynamic conference programme. Julius and Christine’s keynote is complemented by an array of transformative sessions designed to showcase the role of event professionals in shaping the future of the industry with their imaginative ideas and solutions.

Introducing the third keynote

Julius Solaris is Founder of Boldpush, an event industry consultancy firm, and Christine Renaud is CEO of Braindate, a digital learning tool fostering conversations among event industry professionals. Their dynamic conversation will take place on the Main Stage at 9.15am on day three of the show.

Titled ‘It’s not 2019 anymore. Why events will never be the same’, this insightful session will see Julius and Christine engage in a frank discussion about the future of events. Designed to ensure attendees walk away with tangible learnings to make their events future proof, the conversation will answer questions such as ‘How do we learn at events?’, ‘Why does belonging at events matter?’, ‘How can events have a bigger impact?’ and ‘What are the top five characteristics of the events of the future?’

Commenting on the session, Julius said: “We live in an era where the concept of meeting has never been more fluid. The more we interact online, the more we need to meet. As technology evolves, the future will require event planners to connect audiences regardless of the medium in a sustainable, inclusive, and trustworthy way.”


Highlighting the necessity of reinventing the speaker-attendee relationship for the 21st century, Christine adds: “The future of events will be influenced by the future of learning, which is self-directed, collaborative, and experiential. Innovation at events will be rooted in the reorchestration of power dynamics between „attendees“ and „speakers“, and our session will provide attendees with concrete approaches to lead the way towards a much-needed cultural shift in the industry.”

Looking to the future

Putting innovation centre stage on day one of the show are three sessions which drive the conversation about the future of events.

Martin Green CBE, Managing Director of Eurovision Liverpool 2023, will take to the Main Stage in an invigorating address titled ‘Eurovision is perfect: a live event for the digital age’. The mastermind behind some of Britain’s most significant cultural events, including the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Opening and Closing Ceremonies, Martin will discuss how Eurovision Liverpool 2023 was organised, why he believes the contest is the perfect live event for the digital age, and the insights events producers can take from it.

Leading the way on the Impact Stage is Event Technologist at global experience agency DRPG, Nick Fagan. Nick’s enlightening session, titled ‘Tech for good: an introduction to new technologies with a conscience’, will present attendees with the technologies likely to influence events in the next 12 months, and the next 10 years. Approaching the subject from the perspective of ethical and accessible events, this is the introduction to a series of sessions curated by Nick taking place throughout the week.

In an illuminating pitch session, Glenn Cauwenberghs, Senior Project Specialist on Innovation at the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), and Professor Alessandra Priante, Regional Director for Europe at UNWTO, will showcase two winning startups who responded to UNWTO’s global call for the most sustainable, innovative, and disruptive entrepreneurs offering smart solutions for event tourism. Taking to the stage are Eduardo Lebre, CEO and Founder of Circular Unity, a company pioneering solutions to help co-create a sustainable future, and Alexandre Bediguian, Communications Manager at Touch2See, a company making sporting events accessible to the visually impaired. This will be followed by a comprehensive round table discussion focusing on the future of event tourism.

Reinforcing the power of innovation

Claudia Hall, IBTM World Event Director, said: “As one of the leading global trade shows in the events sector, we are at the forefront as our industry evolves and adapts to address its challenges and welcome its many opportunities. At IBTM World, we are determined to provide a platform for the changemakers at the heart of this evolution. Their relentless pursuit of innovative ideas elevates the possibilities for all of us, and empowers event professionals to embrace change and turn the ordinary into the extraordinary.”

Visitor and press registration is still open for IBTM World 2023. Register before November 27 to avoid the onsite registration fee.