In December 2019, for the fifth consecutive year, the Swedish Exhibition & Congress Centre Group in Gothenburg, Sweden, became certified according to the international event sustainability management system ISO 20121. In 2015, the company—with the vision to become the most attractive meeting place in Europe—became the Nordic region’s first major venue to be certified under this standard, which includes environmental, social and economic aspects.
“The fact that our certification has been renewed shows how integrated, methodical and long-term our approach is to sustainability. Sustainable development is one of our strategic focus areas, in which we aim to be internationally competitive,”comments Carina Dietmann, VP Communications, Swedish Exhibition & Congress Centre Group.
The Swedish Exhibition & Congress Centre Group, which also includes the hotel Gothia Towers, was early to introduce active sustainability efforts. Already twenty years ago, the company established a sustainability team to further the development of sustainable operations.
The company’s sustainability efforts are based around eight focus areas: energy and climate, waste, transport, work environment, food and drink, accessibility and social engagement. Sustainability initiatives are implemented in each of these areas, all with the objective of meeting the UN’s environmental goals under Agenda 2030. A crucial part of the sustainability work involves engaging the organisation’s 850 full-time employees, who regularly receive information and training in sustainability.
“We collaborate widely within the company, which includes trade fairs, congresses, hotels and restaurants. Our ISO certification provides fantastic acknowledgement of how sustainability permeates our whole organisation, and of how we build generational value and are able to offer visitors, customers and guests a world-class sustainable venue,”says Carin Kindbom, President and CEO, Swedish Exhibition & Congress Centre Group.
ISO 20121 is an international event sustainability standard launched at the Olympic Games in London in 2012, from which the standard takes its name. ISO stands for International Organization for Standardization. The certification is a third party certification with auditing by an external certification body.
The Swedish Exhibition & Congress Centre Group is one of Europe’s largest fully integrated meeting places with a unique city-centre location. The Group creates and hosts exhibitions, events, hotels, restaurants, spa and a theatre – everything under one roof. Around 2 million people are annually welcomed to the meeting place. The Swedish Exhibition & Congress Centre Group is owned by a private, independent foundation; The Swedish Exhibition & Congress Centre Foundation, that generates over 3,2 billion SEK in tourism industry revenue yearly.