ICCA Ranking Report Reveals How Meetings were Impacted by the Pandemic

Press Room > 2022

The International Congress and Convention Association has released its annual analysis of association meetings worldwide. The latest ICCA Ranking Report examines 8,000 meetings scheduled for the year 2021, and categorises them, based on how meetings, were impacted by the covid-19 pandemic. The report, compares last year’s affected meetings with ICCA’s analysis of meetings in 2020.

Also revealed  in the 2021 report, was the mentality that the “show must go on” in the industry with the market share of virtual and hybrid meetings, doubled in just one year. While business continuation increased by 30 percent and, business cancellation dropped from 61 percent to 31 percent.

The Middle East had the highest business continuation rate of all regions at 77 percent. This was followed by Latin America, at 72 percent and Asia 71 percent. While Latin America demonstrated, the most significant growth, in business continuation compared to 2020 which saw, an increase of 35 percent.

After a hiatus in 2020, ICCA’s Destination Performance Index has also returned. The DPI ranks destinations’ success in winning original bids, covid-19 event policies and adaptability as well as, technological capabilities to convert on-site events into virtual or hybrid events maintaining business continuation.

“Now that the global meetings industry has had more time to adapt to the challenges of the pandemic, we wanted to acknowledge and reward the effort of destinations to not only keep these crucial meetings going but also, to improve their business operations. The investments that destinations have made in new technologies, partnerships, and advocacy initiatives will, continue to drive our industry forward,” said ICCA’s chief executive officer, Mr. Senthil Gopinath.

He added: “Although we have yet to return to pre-pandemic numbers, we have gained significant ground on the road to full recovery. Further, we have transformed the meetings industry in the process.”

He stated the report delivers a more holistic representation of the pandemic’s impact on association meetings globally. It shows strong and definitive signs of progressive recovery for the industry.

The full 2021 ICCA Ranking Destination Performance Index is available to ICCA members.