Sonic approval for hybrid events

When the Ultrasonic Industry Association (UIA) wanted to conduct its yearly symposium, UIA50, the organisers required a venue that could not only provide a unique event space, but also offer considerable academic credentials to host global industry leaders.

Many events have been adapting to ensure that everyone can participate by switching to a hybrid format, allowing those who cannot join in person to attend virtually. The UIA50 symposium was no different. As the UIA’s first event offering a face-to-face experience since 2019, it was essential that the chosen location offered a combined setup. Fortunately, the symposium was taking place at Warwick Conferences, where it could utilise the hybrid facilities available to accommodate each guests needs.

Ultrasonic

The UIA’s annual symposium partners with a recognised university. Following a meeting with representatives of Warwick Conferences at an exhibition in Las Vegas, the UIA selected the University of Warwick as 2020 hosts. The combination of the University’s ultrasonic experts and Warwick Conferences’ award-winning venues made it a perfect match for UIA50.

Fran Rickenbach, Executive Director at UIA explained: “We had originally planned to conduct our 2020 symposium at Warwick Conferences, but unfortunately we were unable to due to the restrictions on international travel and events. As a result, we conducted our 2020 and 2021 events online, having our lecturers, students, and guests dial in to discuss the latest research and developments in the ultrasound industry.

“Once we were able to return to the idea of having a face-to-face event, we explored the hybrid meeting facilities with Warwick Conferences’ with their Business Development Manager, Emma Willis. We jumped at the chance to utilise this method of meeting. Not only did this mean that we could see many of our guests and speakers for the first time in person in two years, but we could also have presentations and participation from colleagues who wouldn’t be able to make the international journey.”

A Hybrid Event

The hybrid setup combined Warwick Conferences’ virtual meeting service with the Scarman tiered lecture theatre, allowing guests to experience the symposium with the same quality regardless of their location. Warwick Conferences’ proximity to Birmingham International airport meant that it was easy to access for global travellers. For the three-day event, 35 people attended the facility in person, while 13 members and presenters joined online, matching the numbers seen in 2019’s event in Toronto.

Outside the Conference

As the symposium was partnered with the University of Warwick’s Engineering department, the group were treated to a tour of the physics department to see their current ultrasonic research. To ensure the guests enjoyed their stay outside of the event, the Warwick Conferences team assisted with the planning of separate activities for the UIA group, both on and off-site.

The delegates enjoyed a wine and cheese evening which was carefully chosen by Warwick Conferences’ knowledgeable team.  A trip to Warwick Castle provided a second afternoon of entertainment and delegates enjoyed dining in nearby Leamington Spa on their other free night.

Fran added: “Having our 50th Symposium at Warwick Conferences exceeded all expectations. Its ability to accommodate a multi-access meeting and provide an excellent collegial atmosphere, both for the people attending in person and those joining virtually, made it a stand-out venue. We would certainly return to conduct other UIA events in the future.”

For more information about hybrid events at Warwick Conferences, please visit https://warwick.ac.uk/services/conferences/spaces/virtual-conference/hybrid-events