Insights/ The world on one stage in Dubai

We’ve held our fair share of amazing events in Dubai in the past and become real experts on how to make the most of the destination. It’s always an enticing place to visit, discovering new venues and suppliers. We’re even more excited, however, about what next year has in store, with the city hosting Expo 2020 Dubai.

It’s been billed as ‘the world’s greatest show’ and ‘the world’s largest meeting of minds’ - Dubai clearly has big ambitions and aspirations for the event and will be looking to showcase its reputation as an international business hub.

So the bar has already been set high, but with a year to go until it opens its doors, it might not be on everyone’s radar - yet. We think there’s no better time than now to get involved and see how Expo 2020 could fit in with your business events. Major construction work has been done and dusted and organisers are keen to involve local and international businesses. Here’s our take on making the most of what’s on offer at this one-of-a-kind experience.

Expo 2020 Dubai is the first such event to be held in the Middle East and is expected to attract more than 15 million people over its six-month run. The event celebrates the best in science, technology and industrial innovation, showcasing major tourist attractions and exports from countries around the world; so far, 190 countries have thrown their hat in the ring.

The event is built around three sub-themes - opportunity, mobility and sustainability, focusing on highlighting social problems, digital connectivity and alternative sources of food, water and clean and renewable energy. It’s also set to be a great opportunity for business networking, with a strong presence from companies and NGOs.

The Expo will also feature a number of country pavilions, giving visitors the chance to try local food and make use of some quirky spaces, which could be ideal for a spot of networking or for hosting a thought-provoking business meeting. Dubai Exhibition Centre, a 45,000 sqm space featuring a theatre and an auditorium alongside meeting spaces, and co-located with Expo 2020, will also open next October. This could offer the perfect opportunity to combine an event against the background of the Expo and its themes.

There’s also going to be focus on wellbeing, featuring mindfulness sessions and extreme sports so it looks like there is something for everyone.

Previous expos have traditionally been the launchpad for all manner of inventions such as the ice cream cone and Alexander Graham Bell’s telephone, the talk of the fair at the 1876 Philadelphia Centennial Exposition. They’ve also seen the inauguration of iconic landmarks like the Eiffel Tower. So while this Expo has a lot to live up to, if there’s one thing we’ve learnt from hosting events in Dubai, it’s to expect the unexpected.

If you or any of your clients are looking to host an event or meeting in the Middle East that ties in with Expo 2020 Dubai we’d love to help. Please get in touch with Amanda Edgcumbe on +44 20 7228 9463 or email amanda.edgcumbe@powwowevents.co.uk.