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TheWorld-ChangingWay We Meet Now  “Can meetings save the world?” we asked in our January cover story (http://bit.ly/eElr25). Our focus was on what we termed “big-tent, big-idea” meetings—from the Clinton Global Initiative to PopTech —which bring together the world’s leading thinkers and activists to train their attention on the world’s biggest problems. Central to the story was


the question: Can the way we meet changehow meetings change the world?... Oneexampleto watch is Tina Brown’s Women in theWorld Summit, in New York City today and tomorrow [March 11–12]. Brown’s conference is taking on truly thorny problems, like sex trafficking in the United States, war’s effect on women, and empowering women in democracies. The conference is being livestreamed today and tomorrow—wherever you happen to be, you are invited to listen in and take part in the conversation. — Barbara Palmer


Unearthing a Natural Disaster Yesterday, with heartbreaking images of disaster-torn Japan still fresh in our minds, my family and I stepped back in time to experience another natural disaster: Mount Vesuvius’ eruption some 2,000 years ago, at the Pompeii exhibit at Discovery Times Square museum in New York City. To see such a large


collection of artifacts so 6 pcmaconvene May 2011


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miraculously preserved— including an entire room of body casts of people consumed by heat and ash —from a faraway land and timein your own backyard, well, it packs its own kind of punch. The exhibit gives visitors a glimpseof a far more advanced society than wemight imagine. Casein point: Pompeii was likely the first fast-food—and drive- thru—destination. People pulled up to food stalls in their chariots. Hint: There’s theF&B link to our industry. — Michelle Russell


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Snippets from some of our recent posts


#sxswcares About Japan


At SXSW Interactive, in Austin, RobWu, of the digital fundraising platform CauseVox, and bloggers Leigh Durst from LivePath and Deb Ng launched a social-media campaign to raise funds to aid in the [Japanese earth- quake] disaster just hours after it occurred, using the hashtag #sxswcares and a quickly assembled web- site, sxsw4japan.org. The campaign, which partnered with the Red Cross, began with a goal of $10,000 — which it quickly reached. It is halfway to its new goal of $50,000. [At press time, the campaign had raised $125,000.]


— Barbara Palmer


Convene onSite: IACC–Americas Oneof my favoritethings about meetings is that they involve so many different facets of human experience— education, conversation, entertainment, food, aesthetics, travel, and on and on. Judging by theThought Leader Summit that kicked off the IACC–Americas Chapter 2011 Annual Conference onWednesday [March 23], I’m not theonly one who feels this way, because what was most notableabout thelineup of panelists was their varied areas of expertise. Their discussion around thetopic of “Creating Compelling Meeting Experiences” wasn’t so much multidisciplinary as extra-disciplinary, with an emphasis on the many, many different ways that people learn. And conference centers themselves became part of the conversation only as relates to how their design, layout, amenities, etc. facilitate (or impede) learning. — Christopher Durso


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PHOTO BY MARC BRYAN-BROWN FOR THE DAILY BEAST


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