GEO Business is shaping up to be one of the most important shows in the geospatial calendar, with over 2,200 visitors from 50 countries in attendance at the event in May. The event has won the support of an international audience and has cemented its position as the industry’s premier event building on the remarkable success of the previous two years.
Event Director Caroline Hobden explained how GEO Business has stormed its way into the industry event calendar in such a short period of time: “This event is very much being driven by industry. We are out there listening and being guided by the trade associations, societies, exhibitors and visitors and are working tirelessly to develop an event where there is a real sense of ownership within the community. The support we’ve had, and continue to have, has been phenomenal and it’s this level of involvement that has made the 2016 show such a success.”
The show kicked off with a keynote address from Applied Futurist Tom Cheesewright whose presentation was entitled, ‘Smart cities, BIM, drones, Al, 3D printing, off-site construction. What can the industry expect from the future and how can it prepare to face it?’ A thought provoking start to the session that was followed by a panel debate featuring Ed Parsons from Google, Professor Gianvito Lanzolla from Cass Business School and Gary Gale from What 3 Words who all deliberated on the topic, ‘Emerging technology and applications – how to maximise the societal benefits of what we do’.
Day two welcomed a keynote address from Amanda Clack, President Elect at RICS on ‘Infrastructure Delivery – the State of the Industry’ presenting how the industry can move towards better project performance. Amanda was then joined on stage by Alex Bywaters of Highways England, Peter Vale of Thames Tideway and Jon Kerbey from High Speed2 who all debated ‘How the geospatial sector will embrace the opportunity presented by the UK’s commitment to invest in large infrastructure projects’.
Moving away from the packed conference to the buzz of the exhibition floor, visitors were engulfed by the high energy that enveloped the hall throughout the show. Everywhere you looked you could see smiling faces, hand shaking and deals being done – proving that this annual meeting place is where you need to be to do business and learn from the most prolific and innovating equipment manufacturers and service providers on the international stage.
Visitors also welcomed the opportunity to attend the free workshop programme offering 85 sessions that centred on hands on product testing, proving a real benefit to visitors with some sessions so packed there was standing room only. The most popular sessions included topics such as Bringing reality into BIM and BIM into reality (Leica Geosystems), Leveraging open data (Landmark Information Group), New technologies for automated modelling and construction validation (Clearedge 3D) and How to create top quality interactive and zoomable web maps (XYZ Maps).
The brand new industry led associated meeting programme was a veritable feast of hot topics. The Survey4BIM group announced a Call for Action, arguing that in the near future, BIM will drive not just the digital transformation of the built environment, but also the geospatial industry itself. Day two included a hugely anticipated debate, hosted by The Survey Association entitled, ‘How is the industry tackling stolen equipment?’, featuring a panel of representatives from the police, the insurance industry and equipment manufacturers.
Once again the lively social programme did not disappoint, kicking off on the evening before the show opened with the welcome drinks at a local watering hole. Day one saw a brand new and extremely popular networking event – the GEO Ale Trail and later on that evening, the infamous gala dinner providing a perfect way to network and unwind at the end of a busy day.
GEO Business will once again return to the Business Design Centre, London UK from 23-24 May 2017 – we hope you can join us!
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