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Global TEDSummit Picks Scotland as 2019 Destination

Press Release   •   Jul 24, 2018 10:00 BST

Neil Brownlee, Head of Business Events, VisitScotland; Marshall Dallas, Chief Executive, EICC and Amanda Ferguson, Head of Business Tourism at Marketing Edinburgh

Scotland has fought off stiff competition from around the globe to play host to the next TEDSummit. The prestigious summit, part of the TED network, which has previously been held in Canada will take place at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre from 21 to 25 July 2019, bringing together up to 1,300 members of the international TED community.

The bid to bring the event to Edinburgh was led by the EICC, VisitScotland Business Events, Convention Edinburgh, and Scottish Enterprise, backed by support from the Scottish Government, the Lord Provost of Edinburgh, the University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh Napier University, Social Bite, Festivals Edinburgh, Edinburgh Science Festival and the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations. All worked together to show why the capital is the ideal place to host this gathering of world-leading thinkers.

TED is a non-profit organisation devoted to identifying, and then spreading, relevant and potentially impactful ideas. It began in 1984 with a conference converging technology, entertainment and design and over time the organization has expanded its topics from science to business to global issues. TEDSummit gathers the most engaged members of the global TED community for community brainstorms, discussions, performances, workshops, outdoor activities and an eclectic program of mainstage talks – in beautiful surroundings.

Edinburgh already has as a wealth of experience in hosting and delivering world-class business events as well as being a centre for leading thinkers and innovators. The EICC previously hosted TEDGlobal from 2010-2012 and its believed the benefits of hosting this ‘trophy’ event next year will go beyond tourism, positioning Edinburgh and Scotland on the world stage.

For a big multi-day TED event we need a very specific type of location”, says Bruno Giussani, the Global Curator of TED and coordinator of TEDSummit, who knows Edinburgh well for having curated the previous TEDGlobal events.

“It isn’t sufficient to just have a beautiful and strong theatre infrastructure – which the EICC provides. We look at the cultural atmosphere of the place, and at all the spaces that we will use – including hotels, restaurants, events and celebration venues and exhibition spaces – as creating a sort of virtual campus that our attendees will be able to experience over several days, moving from one venue to the other by foot, engaging with and immersing themselves in the city”. Edinburgh, he added, “offers this atmosphere in spades, and we look forward to bringing the TED community to town.”

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said:

“With our history, culture and wealth of experience of hosting world leading festivals, Edinburgh is the ideal location for TedSummit 2019.

“This international event will be an opportunity to show off Scotland as a home of innovation and of creativity and to build on our reputation as a place to visit, to live and to develop new ideas.”

Malcolm Roughead, Chief of Executive of VisitScotland commented:

“Scotland is known throughout the world as a country with a warm welcome, which millions of visitors experience and enjoy every year. We’re a nation of pioneers, and a home to ground-breaking scientists, philosophers, engineers and architects for a number of years. Scotland’s innovative past, present and future continue to inspire and influence audiences across the globe, so it seems fitting that we’ll be hosting such a prestigious event as the TEDSummit in Edinburgh next year.”

Marshall Dallas, Chief Executive, EICC said:

"TEDSummit brings some of world's greatest thinkers and change-makers together once every three years to discuss emerging trends and to share their thoughts and dreams about building a better future for people in every corner of the earth. We are beyond excited to welcome TED to our venue, city and country in 2019. It is hard to think of any one event anywhere on the international scene that captures our own vision statement any better, to create an environment to inspire ideas that change the world."

Amanda Ferguson, Head of Business Tourism at Marketing Edinburgh, said:

“Edinburgh is renowned for attracting the great minds of the world, encouraging innovative thinking and inspiring debate, so it is entirely fitting that we welcome this unique, global initiative to our capital. This win is a result of close partnership working across Edinburgh, and the impact of hosting the event – both culturally and economically - will be immense. We at Marketing Edinburgh could not be happier to host TEDSummit in our city and look forward to a lively, engaging and enjoyable event.”

Jane Martin, Managing Director, Scottish Enterprise said:

“This win for Scotland demonstrates the power of partnership working and being ambitious about what we can achieve together. With the world’s thinkers and innovators coming together here next year, we have a real opportunity to put Scotland firmly on the map as a place that embraces progressive ideas and is a great place to visit, to work, to live and to invest for the future.”

-ENDS-

Notes to Editors


About Business Events

  • The Business Events Industry focuses on Scotland as a destination for conferences, conventions, and incentive programmes.
  • Currently, business events represent 20% of all tourism expenditure in Scotland. Business visitors spend almost twice that of leisure visitors, making it a highly lucrative sector, and it is also less seasonal than leisure tourism.
  • In addition, attracting a major conference reinforces Scotland’s credentials in key industries and can make us a more attractive destination for inward investors, meaning that the benefits of business events extend well beyond delegate spend.

About VisitScotland

  • Follow us on twitter: @visitscotnews
  • VisitScotland is Scotland’s national tourism organisation. Its core purpose is to maximise the economic benefit of tourism to Scotland.
  • The organisation’s core objective is to contribute to the Tourism 2020 Strategy ambition of growing tourism revenues by £1 billion by 2020.
  • This will be supported by five overarching strategies: Marketing, Events, Quality and Sustainability, Inclusive Tourism, International Engagement.
  • The organisation employs 700 people and has offices and VisitScotland Information Centres across Scotland.
  • Spending by tourists in Scotland generates around £12 billion of economic activity in the wider Scottish supply chain and contributes around £6 billion to Scottish GDP (in basic prices). This represents about 5% of total Scottish GDP
  • For VisitScotland’s press releases go to http://www.visitscotland.org/media_centre.aspx, tourism statistics and frequently asked questions go to http://www.visitscotland.org/
  • Where possible, a Gaelic speaker will be made available for broadcast interviews on request (Far an tèid iarraidh, agus far am bheil sin nar comas, bruidhinnidh neach le Gàidhlig aig agallamh)
  • For holiday information on Scotland go to www.visitscotland.com
  • For information about business tourism in Scotland go to www.conventionscotland.com

2018 Year of Young People

  • The Year of Young People (YoYP 2018) will inspire Scotland through its young people aged 8 to 26, celebrating their achievements, valuing their contributions to communities and creating new opportunities for them to shine locally, nationally and globally
  • Central to YoYP 2018 will be a celebratory events programme that puts young people at the heart of its development and delivery, creating new and valuable experiences for young Scots and the wider public, with links to the inaugural 2018 European Championships.
  • Over 200 young people throughout Scotland are currently being recruited to become YoYP 2018 Ambassadors. Ambassadors will ensure that people and organisations in their communities know about what’s happening and will lead on projects and activities to create events and opportunities to celebrate young people.
  • The Year of Young People will have six themes which were developed in co-production with young people themselves:
  • Participation – looking at how young people can influence public services and decisions which affect their lives
  • Education – creating a stronger role for young people in shaping their learning
  • Health and Wellbeing – supporting young people to lead healthier, active lives and have opportunities to learn about and improve their mental health and resilience
  • Equality and Discrimination – broadcasting the value of young Scots, challenging negative perceptions of young people, and supporting young people to take leading roles in challenging discrimination in all its forms.
  • Enterprise and regeneration – celebrating young people’s role in innovation, entrepreneurship and the Scottish economy as well as making Scotland a greener and more pleasant place to live
  • Culture – celebrating young people’s talent and contribution to Scottish culture and arts.
  • Further information on what’s happening and how people can get involved can be found on the new website www.yoyp2018.scot or @YOYP2018 on Twitter.