March 29 2021

Sydney has become the first Australian city to join the Hybrid Cities Alliance founded in December by The Hague, Ottawa, Prague and Geneva.

According to the convention bureau website of co-founding city The Hague, the Alliance is “a way to collectively and individually raise the profile of hybrid options for clients and for our cities”.

BESydney’s Executive General Manager of Bidding Kristian Nicholls says his organisation’s strategic and client-centric approach made the Alliance “a good fit” for BESydney.

“Whilst the past year in Australia has seen us get back to limited capacity meetings and exhibitions in different forms across the country, our clients have not,” says Nicholls.

“The impact of COVID brought with it an immediate halt in domestic and international travel and the introduction of physical distancing and gathering caps. As a result, we supported our clients in turning to virtual platforms to connect and communicate with their local and global communities.

“A fully virtual solution addressed a short-term need, however it also highlighted two clear outcomes – the ability for clients to potentially grow their audience online, but also the intrinsic benefits of a face-to-face environment for networking and collaborating.

“This is why BESydney firmly believes that hybrid events, drawing on the best outcomes from both physical and virtual events, will be a core client requirement into the future.”

Nicholls also said it was a good opportunity for both Sydney and its event clients.

“Joining the Hybrid City Alliance enables Sydney to profile its world class physical and virtual event infrastructure along with like-minded destinations to present a global solution for clients seeking hybrid and multi-city events solutions.

“It also enables Sydney to share and learn from global best practice in the hybrid environment for the benefit of our clients,” he said.

Seoul has become the first city in Asia to join the Hybrid Cities Alliance.

Image credit: Destination NSW