March 2023 Newsletter

The World needs AI: Artificial Association Intelligence

2022 was the year when mass-market AI went mainstream, but this year it will go hypersonic.  Hot on the heals of astounding art generator DALL-E2, OpenAI released chatbot ChatGPT, reaching 100 million active monthly users only two months after launch, the fastest growing consumer product in history, potentially revolutionising search, journalism, marketing, and even computer programming, amongst many other fields.  Now GPT4 is waiting in the wings, eager to make its predecessor obsolete!  AI giant Google isn’t sitting on its hands, releasing rival chatbot Bard and pushing its massively funded team to swiftly launch more of its product pipeline into the public domain, whilst numerous small start-ups with AI credibility are speeding to multi-hundred million dollar valuations.

But 2023 is also going to be the year when we get really serious about AI ethics, accuracy, inclusivity and regulation, as these powerful tools arrive in the hands of scammers, disinformation purveyors and bad state actors.  Democratisation of AI is a fantastic idea, but it is going to be more and more difficult to work out what information is true and what is not, and to distinguish between genuine authorities and snake oil salesmen!

This is why the biggest USP of international associations – the collective knowledge and accumulated wisdom of genuine (human!) experts in their fields – is going to become even more valuable than ever.  Associations need to embrace their natural role as curators and certifiers of the very latest collective knowledge, and communicate these vital roles to policymakers and the general public, as well as to their own specialist communities.  It is also why associations need to seriously educate themselves about AI, so that they can use it as a supportive tool rather than waiting for it to become a (misleadingly credible) replacement for their expertise.

The Global Association Hub partner cities – Brussels, Dubai, Singapore and Washington DC – look forward to working with our association friends throughout the coming year and beyond to promote and advocate for each organisation’s unique Association Intelligence!

Martin Sirk
Global Association Hubs International Advisor

Governance – the importance of good character!

Our latest article (A Tale of Two Governors) in media partner Boardroom magazine is a plea for associations to pay much more attention and to divert far more resources to the evaluation, selection, training and development  of “good governors” from all regions of the wold and categories within their community, and provides a glimpse of the horrors that can occur when “bad governors” get their hands on the levers of power.

Do your Board members constantly strive to be empathetic, and do they put the association’s long-term interests ahead of their own at all times?  Do you even ask yourself this question?

Association Resources Overview – PDF now available for download!

Everything you wanted to know about standard and customised services for international associations in Brussels, Dubai, Singapore and Washington DC. 

Legal, HR, financial, operational.  Events, personnel, technical.  Offices, registration, support & incentives.  And much more!

This brand-new 8-page document is packed with short-cut hyperlinks to the resources you’re looking for and the people who can assist you to achieve your association’s regional or global objectives.

Please use the download button on our Useful Resources page to access this wealth of useful information.

European Association Summit, Brussels, 27-28 April
You’re invited to be Smarter, Closer, Fresher, Brighter!

Registrations open 7 March and detailed plans are moving swiftly ahead for the latest edition of this must-attend association education event, which Global Association Hubs is delighted to once again be supporting.  Education sessions will cover Business & Strategy, Communication & Membership, Meeting Solutions for Tomorrow, and Advocacy & Public Affairs!  Delegates will discuss how to engage younger generations, manage Brexit disruptions, effectively adopt new technologies, translate Diversity/Equity/Inclusion strategies into practical action plans, and much more.

Save the dates in your diary and bookmark this page for detailed information and registration.

World Vaccine Congress & Expo demonstrates Washington DC’s “connected capital city”credentials 

Washington DC claims that no other city in North America has its ability to bring together top policymakers, business CEOs, scientific & healthcare institutional- and thought-leaders: it is a uniquely “connected capital city”!

Nowhere is this better exemplified than in the World Vaccine Congress & Expo that will take place 4-6 April this year at the Walter E Washington Convention Center, and which will bring together thousands of these experts to debate and find solutions to some of the world’s most critical issues.  National and international association leaders will share the stage with Big Pharma bosses, scientists working in the most cutting-edge fields, and top figures from national and global institutions and agencies.  Topics will range from the very latest science (from pure research to bio-manufacturing) to vaccine equity, and from funding and investment to  thinking about polices that can address the risks of new potential pandemics. 

Singapore fully open for business:
large societally-valuable association events return

Singapore has lowered pandemic risk status to the lowest level and lifted COVID restrictions, removing the need for test certificates or insurance for international travellers.  Click here for latest info.

International associations have swiftly taken advantage of the more open conditions, which reinforce Singapore’s long-term commitment to help scientific ideas turn into societally valuable products and services, bringing a stream of major international events to Singapore, together with vital inward investment in R&D, making Singapore even more appealing as a regional association hub.  Click here for more information about how Singapore’s strategic approach to innovation and research provides the edge to quickly transform scientific and medical breakthroughs into viable patient solutions.

Held at the Singapore EXPO for the first time from 30 Nov to 2 Dec 2022, World Aquaculture Singapore (WAS)welcomed over 3,000 industry professionals from 82 countries, committed to advance the interests of global food safety innovation and food security through aquaculture. Among other outcomes, the conference saw the Launch of the Singapore Standard: Specification for Clean & Green Urban Farms for Aquaculture and MOU for “AquaPolis” – a new Research and Innovation Cluster for Tropical Marine Aquaculture, based in Singapore.

Singapore also hosted the 14th World Stroke Congress which was held for the first time in South-East Asia, from 26 to 29 October 2022 at the Suntec Convention & Exhibition Centre.  The Congress saw strong participation from more than 4,400 visiting and virtual delegates from 107 countries, including 100 stroke survivors and their families, and saw a major global advocacy push including Singapore-wide awareness-raising initiatives in support of World Stroke Day.

Dubai international event bid successes double in 2022

Dubai Business Events won 232 bids for international events during 2022, double the number of bids won during 2021, and by far the highest level ever.  With many of these bids relating to high-profile international association meetings, this performance reflects the growing recognition of Dubai’s role as a global association hub, serving not only association communities in the Gulf and Middle East, but also attracting delegates from throughout Africa and South Asia, whilst offering unparalleled long-haul access via Emirates air routes to Europe, the rest of Asia, and North America.

Major association events captured in 2022 included the International Federation of Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine WorldLab Congress 2024, International Congress of Endocrinology 2024, World Sports Medicine Congress 2024, World Congress of the International Society of Radiographers and Radiological Technologies 2026, and International Symposium on Dental Hygiene 2028.

Latest edition of the Business Events World

We are a proud partner of The Iceberg, publisher of Business Events World, which always has a lot of interesting things to say about the invaluable societal impact of international association meetings, and on the other side of the coin, the danger of being seen to be part of the “sustainability problem”, rather than part of the solution.

Contact changes in Dubai!

After nearly 10 successful years leading Dubai Business Events, Steen Jakobsen has announced his departure to take up a new, exciting professional role outside the tourism and events sector.  He was one of the instigators of Dubai’s strategy to become a world-class association hub, and heavily involved in the creation of the Dubai Association Centre.  

His role as key Global Association Hubs contact person for Dubai has been taken over by Karina Lance, Deputy Director, Dubai Department of Economy & Tourism.

Everyone at Global Association Hubs wishes Steen every success in his new chapter!

Report on Association HQ & Regional Offices, 2006-2022

Our partner cities – Brussels, Dubai, Singapore and Washington DC –  continued in 2022 to gradually increase their leading positions as regional hubs, according to data from UIA (Union of International Associations) regarding where associations locate their offices.  This maintains the long-term trend of our cities increasing their market share both globally and within their specific regions.

Am I lazy, stupid, or resilient? – Blog post by Association Laboratory’s Dean West

Association Laboratory Inc. is a research partner of Global Association Hubs, and Dean West always has something thought-provoking to say to association leaders in his amusing Blog,”My Seat at the Bar”.  This time he reflects on “Strategic Resilience” and concludes it isn’t about dealing with big disasters, it’s about overcoming (and learning from) a never-ending string of small obstacles and inevitable failures.

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