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3. Make speakers aware of sustainable behaviour

Explain the sustainability goals of your event to the speakers and request that they conduct themselves accordingly. This can include, among other things, the following actions: travel to and from the event by public transportation, sparing use of paper (e.g. avoiding handouts and printed information materials, distribute lecture notes or papers by email prior to the event), and accessible presentations.

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1. Communicate in an environmentally friendly way

You should, of course, make an effort yourself to arrange your own communication in an environmentally friendly way. For example, utilize emails instead of letters, and avoid printouts in order to save paper. You can find more tips on the topic of sustainable communication materials in the section titled “Conference Materials”.

Further Information

Environmentally friendly Conference and Communications Materials - Here you will find recommendations for sustainable communication and conference materials.

2. Inform staff and raise their awareness

Inform your team and equip them with the awareness needed to identify and consider sustainability issues during planning and execution of the event. Convince staff and helpers of your philosophy and encourage them to utilize their own ideas in creating a more sustainable event. Only when your event team is informed and motivated, will it be able to represent sustainability in a credible manner and convey this to the participants.

4. Communicate in an accessible way

You can also design your means of communication in an accessible way. Pay attention to the following criteria: use a large font size (14 pt) in information and program leaflets, choose matte coated paper instead of high gloss paper, prepare information materials for visually impaired people using high contrast designs, develop accessible internet pages or incorporate accessible document downloads. 

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5. Provide a contact for special needs

Special needs amongst participants can arise as a result of disabilities, allergies or accompanying children, for example. To be able to address these needs professionally, you should include relevant contact details in the invitation, on your website or during online registration, so that participants can inform you of these requests – and that way you have the necessary time to respond.

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6. Provide information about sustainability goals prior to the event

Inform participants, stakeholders and the public about your sustainability goals before the event, for example in the invitation, in information leaflets or on the event’s home page. This way you can explain your motivation and describe individual measures, for example, why you are pursuing mainly paperless means of communication, or why you will be offering a climate friendly menu. Here you can also encourage environmentally friendly behavior amongst the participants.     



7. Increase awareness of environmentally friendly transport options

Travel of participants to and from an event accounts for a large proportion of its carbon emissions (for international conferences up to 80%). Motivate participants to take public transportation by recommending this in the invitation, the online registration and on your website. Include, for example, a comparison of the carbon emissions of different transport options, to help raise awareness. In particular for those using air travel, you can provide information and offers on offsetting carbon emissions from flights.

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8. Promote sustainability during the event

Inform participants during the event about the actions that have been undertaken, to explain the respective benefits and raise awareness of our social and ecological challenges. Make it clear, for example, why you are offering vegetarian catering or why you are only distributing abstracts in digital form. Speak about your sustainability goals at the welcoming address, for instance, and utilize information boards or digital media to increase guest’s awareness and encourage their environmentally and socially sensitive behavior during the event as well.

9. Inform the public about your commitment

Be assertive in letting the public, the media and your stakeholders know about your commitment to a sustainable event and the actions you are undertaking. It will then become recognizable to all: the event is environmentally conscious, sustainable, well placed, and consequently also of greater interest to potential sponsors. Also have your event listed in the ‘AGENDA’ events calendar.

The three divisions of the Communications & Marketing Department (Communication, Marketing & Event, Web Services) are responsible for external communication, marketing and central university events.

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