It All Started with an Email

2018 International Ornithological Congress

The 2018 International Ornithological Congress is projected by industry professionals to be a game-changer for ornithological conferences worldwide – and it was all born out of an email received by Dr. Robert Elner, adjunct professor at Simon Fraser University and emeritus scientist with Environment Canada.

The correspondence, sent by Tourism Vancouver’s MIND Partnership team (then called Be a Host), encouraged Bob to attend a three-day Bid Seminar workshop that outlined why local industry experts should consider bringing their association’s international meetings to Vancouver – and, more importantly, how to tackle each step of the process. Bob was, at the time, already pegged as a prospective organizer for a future International Ornithological Congress, and the workshop sparked in him a determination to bring the prestigious meeting to his hometown of Vancouver.

 Dr. Robert Elner, adjunct professor at Simon Fraser University and emeritus scientist with Environment Canada.

Dr. Robert Elner, adjunct professor at Simon Fraser University and emeritus scientist with Environment Canada.

The MIND Partnership guided Bob through the complex world of international bid preparation: organizing site tours of prospective host venues; hiring a film company to prepare a standout promotional video; compiling the bid document; and sponsoring two of Bob’s colleagues to assist him in presenting to the Bid Committee in Japan, among many other requirements. Four years after Bob attended the workshop, Vancouver was officially named host city of the 2018 Ornithological Congress.

IOC (August 19 to 26) will take place in tandem with Vancouver Bird Week, branching out from standard academic conferences by synchronizing traditional inclusions – workshops, lectures and field trips – with public-friendly events and celebrations. Bob and his team are aiming to host the biggest and most financially successful scientific meeting on birds the world has seen – and he cites MIND Partnership for making his dream a reality.

 

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