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In 2019 VO Event was even more circular and creative! by Alexandre Velleuer

30 December 2019

With 2020 approaching, we’re taking a look back at how VO reinvented the code in 2019. For an ever more creative, circular and sustainable approach to events.


Innovative cre-activity

One of the most iconic successes in 2019 has flourished in the arid yet demanding terrain of European institutions. Thanks to our collaboration with VO Europe, the first of the European Commission’s “Research and Innovation Days” was a huge success and an golden opportunity to reinvent the format of European Congresses. There were three focuses for the first edition: co-creation, experiential and networking. 

In terms of co-creation, we’ve partnered with the Commission, to create a new conference format which allows all participants (online and offline) to participate in content. We also chose two unprecedented locations for this type of conference. Unprecedented because they did not offer the premises required for this type of event. This is because the locations were raw, spacious and empty but they gave us the freedom to construct a tailored event according to the evolution of concept and content.

For experiential we proposed “wow projects”, a type of launch for the latest and most innovative prototypes, and the Science is Wonderful fair which makes science accessible and interesting to the general public and schools through its 67 stands, resulting in visits from 2,460 pupils.

Finally, in terms of the networking aspect, it's important and essential to achieve the event’s objectives. In addition to lounges, catering and the extra programme, we’ve created 35 booths and private spaces allowing the public to make an appointment with policy makers to share their opinion more directly. More than 293 appointments were made across the three days of events.

The whole Commission is still talking about it, European stars in their eyes, and the 2020 edition is already under way!


A strong transition

To shift the lines by reinventing the rules, you have to be daring. Indeed, why the heck challenge a prosperous sector that’s based on economic and creative recipes that have worked for years? Simply because, as delicate as it is difficult to get across, this questioning was essential to get in tune with environmentally responsible modernity and essential values for forging the future.

VO Event has resolutely embarked on this path since 2018 through a "CSR” (Corporate Social Responsibility) reporting tool aimed at evaluating the sustainable efforts made or not made in event organisation.

In 2019, VO Event took the next step by developing an “Event Circular Toolkit”  for the entire Event sector, with the support of Bruxelles Environment. This toolbox clearly allowed us to reinvent ourselves.

And on the ground, the results are clear! Even in our agency’s biggest recurring achievements. VO Event has thus contributed to injecting a strong dose of “circular” spirit into the Levi Strauss Europe’s Sales Launch at the start of December in Barcelona. Inspired by our Circular Event Toolkit, the team opted for a labelled and environmentally friendly location, for example, a 10,000 m2 set-up made up of 3,800 recovered palettes as well as renting 100% sustainable and local furniture. The brand also daringly reviewed its catering with an exclusively vegetarian menu. VO has successfully transformed and reinvented this international mega event into a responsible event.


CO2 offsetting, a code in itself

It goes without saying that the generalisation of the circular reflex goes hand in hand with the offsetting of remaining CO2 emissions. An objective largely met by VO. With Levi’s but also with all VO’s events which are fully or partially offset according to the project.

This systematic CO2 offsetting has become a rule in itself. In total 2790tonnes of CO2 were offset in 2019 for sustainable projects such as the creation of drinking water wells in Eritrea, the installation of cookers in accommodation in Ghana and Honduras, the building of wind turbines in the Middle East or reforestation in Panama.

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