Fukuoka, the capital city of Fukuoka Prefecture on the island of Kyushu, has joined co-founders Ottawa, The Hague, Geneva, and Prague, and 12 other cities in the Hybrid City Alliance. It is the first Japanese city to become a member of the alliance, which has hub cities in Africa, Asia, Europe, and North and South America.
“Fukuoka Convention & Visitors Bureau is ecstatic to join the like-minded global convention bureaus in the Hybrid City Alliance working toward the resumption of in-person global events,” said Sam Takashima, executive director of the Fukuoka Convention & Visitors Bureau (FCVB). “Together with other members of the Alliance, Fukuoka will offer a simple way to organize multi-city meetings by taking advantage of the global reach of the Alliance and our hybrid-ready venues.”
In October 2020, FCVB gathered information from meeting planners looking to organize events mixing in-person and virtual content. That research resulted in the bureau introducing a two-prong hybrid subsidy system to promote safe events in the city.
The subsidy system ensures venues in Fukuoka have the technology and safety equipment necessary to carry out safe hybrid meetings, as well as helping organizers with the cost of COVID-safe events. To date, 27 venues have been approved for subsidies from FCVB, and response to the program is so positive it will be continued for the 2021-22 financial year.
Fukuoka has also opened three new dedicated event facilities over the past year.
The Hybrid City Alliance was launched in December 2020 by the Hague Convention Bureau, Ottawa Tourism Business Events, Prague Convention Bureau and Geneva Convention Bureau. Its mission is to connect the business events world to a global network of partners that foster collaboration to provide meeting professionals with access to knowledge, innovation, and tools to produce hybrid and multicity events. To assist planners, the Alliance has published a guide to planning multi-city events. It is available for download at hybridcityalliance.org.