Over 70 stakeholders from across the country attended January’s forum for the future of sustainability for Business Tourism in Ireland.
The day was filled with bags of energy and inspiration, all kicked off by Fáilte Ireland’s very own Sam Johnston and Caitríona Doran, followed by an update on Ireland’s 2019 GDS Index results, an academic intervention from Dr Joanne Rourke from Dublin City Council on the Circular Economy and its potential in the MICE sector, and some brilliant presentations from local organisations such as Croke Park, FoodCloud and Green Hospitality.
Our hosts, Croke Park, also did an outstanding job of impressing all attendees with their local, organic and vegetarian feast of bowl foods, sealing delegates approval on their inspiring policies that consider their impact on the neighbouring environment, community and economy.
Ed Gillespie’s hilariously upbeat yet sobering piece “we must stop meeting like this” roused energy levels again after lunch, and of course the day would never have been the same without the magic of our very own moderator, Mr Guy Bigwood.
There was also work to be done – this was a workshop after all - and the wide range of hotels, venues and agencies all got stuck into some group activities which had them identifying their sustainability challenges, and explaining their visions for the sector in the coming years. Further knowledge was also extracted from them via an open feedback system, as well as a stakeholder survey with 250 participants which took place before the day itself.
The day galvanised tremendous optimism and renewed engagement from the GDS Index’s Greatest Improver (2019), which will see Ireland strengthen its strategy and ensure that it continues to grow on its journey towards becoming a leading sustainable destination.