Publication Details

Miller, M. & Kerr, G. (2009). Conventions held by associations: a case study of buyers and suppliers in an emerging conference destination. In J. Carlsen, M. Hughes, K. Holmes & R. Jones (Eds.), Proceedings of the 18th Annual CAUTHE Conference (pp. 1-20). Perth, Australia: Curtin University of Technology.


Conventions constitute one of the fastest growing segments of business tourism, with association conventions being an important sub-segment. Associations are membership-based organisations centred on a business specialisation or common interest. Many destinations have been pursing this segment to host some of the hundreds of conventions held annually by associations. Greater knowledge of associations on the part of location marketers and managers of the relevant businesses contained within the location will improve decision making and most likely lead to more opportunities. This study examines the case of the City of Wollongong, which is attempting to obtain a greater market share of association conventions. Interviews with representatives of the ‘supply side’ from within the destination were undertaken as well as those from the ‘demand side’, being representatives from a number of associations located outside of the city. The outcome is that a number of issues have been identified that are not only be case specific but may have generalisability to other places and in addition may contribute to an agenda for further research.

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