Red hearts on flags and rickshaws greeted over 32 800 heart specialists from 150 countries, who travelled to Munich for the European Society of Cardiology (ESC) Congress 2018 held from 25 to 29 August.
The world’s largest and most important cardiology congress returned to the Bavarian capital for the fourth time, having been here previously in 2004, 2008 and 2012. Munich made this major event highly visible, with ESC branding at the airport and welcoming flags at the exhibition grounds, in the city centre and in front of the main conference hotels, and generally welcomed the international scientists with wide open arms.
Weeks before the event, rickshaws bearing the ESC logo, a red heart, were already rolling out on a special mission: They were making everyone in Munich aware of the public event that took place in the Odeonsplatz square on 25 August 2018. “Healthy Hearts for Munich” was the motto of this public experience event accompanying the ESC Congress 2018, which offered interested citizens expert information on cardiovascular health.
For Deputy Mayor Josef Schmid, head of the city’s Department of Labour and Economic Development, getting the ESC Congress back to the Bavarian capital for the fourth time, was the result of many years of working together in trust and confidence: “Munich presented itself as a competent and experienced host to the ESC Congress 2012 with excellent infrastructure and as a city of knowledge and science. This was also enough to convince the powers that be in the ESC. Munich was therefore delighted to hear that the ESC wanted to come to the city again. A highlight for the citizens of Munich this year was most certainly the public awareness event which gave everyone the opportunity to be part of the congress. This year, too, the city demonstrated that as a leading trade fair and congress venue it can successfully host and manage large international events that blend into the city’s life and culture.”
Dr. Reinhard Pfeiffer, Deputy Chairman of the Board of Messe München, highlighted the appeal and performance of the Bavarian capital as a congress metropolis: “The ESC Congress 2018 has effectively demonstrated Munich’s qualities as a location for high-profile events, from the modern congress centres to the high standards of hotels and restaurants to the professional support and friendly welcome given by the city. Munich is playing in the top league of the most important congress locations in Europe.”
The stage for the ESC Congress 2018 was the ICM (Munich’s international congress centre) and its numerous exhibition halls. For five days over 32 800 researchers and clinicians from around the world shared and discussed the latest research in cardiovascular medicine. More than 4,500 abstracts were presented, and 200 exhibitors showed their products.
“To reduce the burden of cardiovascular diseases, every year in August, the European Society of Cardiology creates a unique platform of exchange: the ESC Congress, that has become the world's largest scientific conference in cardiovascular medicine,” said Isabel Bardinet, Chief Executive Officer of the ESC. “Our congress evolves every year and few destinations are capable of matching their offer to our needs, but the city of Munich and the Messe are also constantly evolving and adapting to meet our growing requirements. We chose to come back because both Munich and the Messe have proven time and again that they understand the needs of association congress organizers, delegates and exhibitors. Munich, and the Messe in particular, provide an ideal setting to showcase the breaking science presented at the ESC Congress.”
Congresses of this magnitude are an important economic factor for Munich and the region because congress attendees spend on average more than twice as much on their travel, accommodation and stay in Munich than other trade fair visitors. Therefore they generate an enormous increase in purchasing power. City marketing activities like flying welcome flags and parading branded rickshaws spotlight Munich’s role as an internationally renowned trade fair and convention destination and showcase the integration of major events into city life.
Detailed information on the public experience event accompanying the ESC Congress 2018 can be found here.