Fáilte Ireland's Meet in Ireland (MII) team has been awarded the Best Improver Award for 2019 from the Global Destination Sustainability (GDS) Index — an international organisation which ranks MICE destinations in terms of sustainability.
Awarded at the closing ceremony of the 58th International Congress and Convention Association Congress in Houston, the GDS-Index also released the ranking of the 50 most sustainable global business tourism and events destinations for 2019.
The judging panel, made up of industry experts, considered four key areas: the city's environmental strategy and infrastructure; social sustainability performance; supplier performance and support; and lastly, the convention bureaus themselves. Meet in Ireland were delighted to receive this recognition that Ireland is continuing to improve as it strives to become one of the top sustainable business tourism destinations in the world.
Previously, only individual cities have won the award. However, in acknowledgement of the immense improvement in sustainability made by each of Ireland's Regional Convention Bureaux — Dublin, Cork, Shannon, Kerry and Galway — it was given at a national level this year. This recognition is a notable endorsement of Fáilte Ireland's tremendous efforts at regional collaboration through Meet in Ireland's programmes.
Fáilte Ireland first joined the GDS-Index in 2017 and was a runner up for the Best Improver Award in 2018. That same year all of Ireland's convention bureaus join the index. Kerry, in the Wild Atlantic Way region, made the most significant improvement, moving up to 20th position from 37th in one year. Galway moved up five places to 15th.
Improving Ireland's sustainability efforts within business tourism has required a thorough plan, including aligning our strategies with the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Fáilte Ireland's Meet in Ireland team has been busy implementing sustainability policies, hosting workshops with convention bureaus and hospitality suppliers while also working to establish a task force to prioritise the most pressing issues. As well as hosting events, Meet in Ireland provides event planners with sustainable event guides, promotes the reduction of single-use plastic in hospitality, offers Corporate Social Responsibility activities to international delegates — such as beach cleans — and produces sustainability information on the website.
Paul Mockler Head of Commercial Development at Fáilte Ireland said, "We invest in the sustainable development of tourism across the country to ensure that communities nationwide can benefit from the social and economic impact tourism brings to Ireland. We are delighted to see our investment in sustainable practices across our convention bureaux in Dublin and the regions being recognised with this special merit award. We are at that start of our journey to become recognised as a world-leading sustainable destination and look forward to further exciting developments in the coming months."
Meet In Ireland is the body responsible for helping MICE planners organise successful international MICE (meetings, incentives, conferences and events experiences in Ireland. The Fáilte Ireland MII team is always available to offer impartial advice for your next corporate meeting or conference, with a focus on doing this in the most sustainable and environmentally responsible way.
Contact the Meet in Ireland team today