New EVCOM chairman Steve Garvey said the events industry currently impacts 2.5%* on the GDP of the UK and pledged to quantify that contribution over the coming year.

He was speaking at the association’s EVCOMference, which brought delegates together 1-3 July 2015 in Liverpool.

David Parrish delivered the keynote on how research and science could enhance the quality of creative communications.

Design and planning were subjects of other contributions.

Mélanie Chevalier and Abigail Wood shared both cultural and practical insights into the challenges of planning complex communication programmes across borders and Michelle Lanham picked up this baton in her exploration of creative event design, examining how the elements of play, place and performance could combine to create immersive experiences.

Elling Hamso and Mike van de Vijver conducted an experiment with Ashfield’s Luke Flett in the role of the client as they collectively explored how to design meetings and communication strategies that produce measurable results in behaviour change.

The day ended in a warehouse, Camp & Furnace, where a variety of pop-up bars and food points provided nourishment to power more conversations.

Jo Dodds and John Smythe led the opening session on Day Two, which was an interactive session designed to explore new ideas.

The final two sessions of EVCOMference celebrated the best of the art of effective communication in different ways. Chris Elmitt used co-creation techniques to full effect with the audience, reminding everyone that his facilitation skills were not dependent on technology but on helping people join together to create answers to challenging questions.

Corporate presentation coach Ian Hughes told the story of how best to speak up, with passion, emotion and real insight.

Marco Forgione, EVCOM CEO, described the two days as “inspiring, educational and challenging”.

“I’m delighted that our community has come together and really embraced the networking and social activities. Liverpool provided a superb backdrop and ACC was a truly outstanding host. Thanks must also go to all our speakers, participants and EVCOM’s sponsors and partners who made the event such a success.”

Content from EVCOMference 2015 will be available from the EVCOM

*UK Economic Impact Survey 2013, UKEMTS, EVCOM

Pictured: Will Storr