1st World Conference on Abdominal Wall Hernia Surgery
First Event Bringing the World to the Fight against Hernia Together
If I have been able to realize the 1st World Conference on Abdominal Wall Hernia Surgery it was thanks to the cooperation of the 5 International Societies and the Sponsors that honoured this event with their active participation and scientifi c involvement. I would also like to extend my gratitude to the Organizing Secretariat, AIM Group International that supported and sustained me in the organization of this unique event since the very beginning, showing not only competence and serious professionalism, but also a smooth and very pleasant attitude and human touch.
Creating something for the first time is never easy especially when it involves the interests of five different leading associations in one field.
AIM Group International had the challenge of placing the 1st World Conference on Abdominal Wall Hernia Surgery on the map.
The main objectives of the event were to achieve a high level of scientific content and present unique experiences and networking opportunities. In addition, the five associations involved were challenged to provide full support and invested in building the groundwork of this first congress in order to become a lasting platform for collaboration. If proven successful this would be the first of many such congresses and a first step in bringing the world to the fight against hernia together.
AIM Group placed an experienced team at the core of the organization of the event. From the very beginning, the team worked closely with the organizing committee to address the goals and objectives. Building a second tier network to encompass all involved associations proved to be a winning strategy to ensuring the success of the event. In order to highlight their support, each association announced their annual events at the same dates as the World Congress in order to not only raise awareness of this new initiative, but to contribute
in building a strong network and ties between their members. Each association in the network further got the chance to present its best scientific resources to
the delegates through its contribution to the scientific program, with careful selection of speakers, and the thoughtful arrangement of sessions.
The event attracted participants with several exceptional features – from a Dinner Event to live and recorded surgery sessions, breakout sessions and networking opportunities. The three live surgery sessions broadcasted 17 operations thereby creating an invaluable learning experience for the audience. The scientific program, posters and live surgery sessions were complemented with 70 special surgery videos, projected on 6 LCD screens throughout the event. They had been produced and selected by each of the associations specifically for the event. The highlight, to celebrate the network created between all associations, was the 1st World Hernia Soccer Challenge which took place at San Siro Stadium before the Gala Dinner. The stadium, built in 1926 and over the years becoming one of the top hosts for international championships, such as Champions League, opened its doors for the first time to non-professional footballers. This symbolic match served as a way to build teams to further tighten the bond of the newly created World Hernia network, while presenting a one-of-a-kind experience to all delegates. With the stage set and the support network in place, the base from which to communicate internationally to the right audience was laid.
The first edition of the event succeeded in gathering nearly 3.000 participants from more than 90 different countries. The scientific value of the event was showcased with more than 800 abstracts submitted, and the 324 posters presented spread over on an area of 4.000 sq.m. There was the support from 44 sponsors.
The vast success of the event allows the conference to go on and its second edition is now in the planning.
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