Now is the time for me to tell you about how we came to host the 22nd IPVS Congress in Korea. Hope all of you have been looking forward to this story.
Where there is a will, there is a way
After the 13th IPVS Congress held in Thailand, Korean veterinarians started thinking about hosting the IPVS Congress in our country. Following the successful organisation of the 1st Asian Pig Veterinary Society Congress (APVS 2003) in Seoul, Korea, in June 2007, members from the Korean Association of Swine Veterinarians (KASV) proposed to participate in bidding to host the 22nd IPVS in Korea, which was officially approved by the KASV Board. As for the venue, Jeju Island was selected based on an evaluation that comprised 10 criteria including accessibility, facilities, and tour programs.
Focusing on the way the hosting country is selected
The hosting country of an IPVS Congress is decided through a vote of a show of hands of the veterinarians attending the General Assembly meeting. Therefore, it was critical that we secure the votes of the opinion leaders in each country and continent, especially those from Europe whom we expected would attend the 20th IPVS Congress in South Africa in a large number. With the hope to welcome a large number of participants from North America, we also definitely needed their support in bid procedure.
Mission: attract world participants’ votes!
Our biggest mission was to attract the votes of the participants from all around the world. We established a plan to convince the South Africa Congress participants by explaining the role that Korea could play as a hub in Asia, home of the world’s biggest swine industry, as well as the natural beauties of Jeju Island.
On June 20, the final stages of our bidding journey began as we left for Durban. We took every opportunity to promote Korea and build our network throughout the day, at meals and during breaks. At the IPVS 2012 Promotional booth, all Korean participants, regardless of who is one from bidding committee or who is a pure participant of the congress, eagerly made an action to introduce Korea and to be won the host post for the IPVS 2012. Wearing Han-bok, Korean traditional custom, we took pictures with the booth visitors and presented them specially designed leaflets and post cards, which made the Korean booth much popular.
We recognised that Korea, relatively to Belgium, Mexico and Czech Republic, was not the country that many people would be aware of, so concentrated on introducing Korea to the participants from all around the world, and it worked! Surely, our friendly rivals were also energetically promoted their own countries, and we felt happy that it could have been one of the interesting spots to enjoy IPVS 2008.
Overcoming the high wall as the first bidder!
June 26th, 2008: D day. After projecting the animation film that we had brought with us, which expressed the beauty of Korea’s past and present, the president of the bid committee, made a presentation on the reasons why Korea should be chosen as the hosting country, the many things to see and do that our nation has to offer, and our price competitiveness using the initials of the IPVS. After all the presentations were completed, we finally proceeded with voting. After the close first and second rounds of votes for four competing countries followed by the emotion-filled moment of victory, Korea had won the bid! We were all ecstatic with joy, and some even had tears in their eyes. Once the bid was confirmed, we received many congratulatory messages and proposals for cooperation from various countries around the world.
Obviously the year-long preparations with the members of KASV as its center and the efforts and dedication that went into building networks and promoting Korea for a possible hosting country for a IPVS congress could not have been maintained if we did not have a clear objective on why we should win the bid to host the IPVS Congress in Korea. There is saying, “Where there’s a will, there’s a way.” Thanks to the passion of Korean Veterinarians to enhance the presence of Korea in the world of veterinary science and to develop the local swine industry, the Goddess of Victory has smiled on us.
Securing participants, abstracts, and budget is crucial to organise a successful Congress. First, to secure sufficient budget to organise a successful Congress, we have been in continuous contact with international animal health companies which have become Industrial Partners and Supporters of IPVS 2012, since our successful bid. Through the IPVS 2010 evaluation conference and the onsite visit to Jeju Island by potential industry sponsors, we were able to pull off signing contracts with eight Industry Partners and four Industry Supporters. In particular, the IPVS 2012 will be the first Congress to have two Korean companies participate as Industry Partners. We are continuing our efforts to attract participants through newsletters sent to the email database that we have secured, onsite promotional activities at numerous international swine congresses, meetings with representatives of different countries, and introducing the IPVS 2012 in swine-related magazines. In consequence of various activities, almost 1,050 abstracts have been submitted, and allocation of both Oral Presentation and Poster Presentation has been completed. The keynote speaker and lead speakers have been selected by the Scientific Committee, too.
What we pursue on IPVS 2012 is as below:
1. The Congress that can satisfy all participants (delegates, accompanying personnel, Industry Partners and Industry Supporters).
2. The Congress with the celebrated speakers and scientific papers in high levels.
3. Form a bond of fellowship to the future of world swine industry among swine producers, swine practitioners, swine researchers and all people who work for swine industry.
4. Present good images of Korea as a nation and its culture to the participants around the world by performing a variety of cultural events.
5.Try new items, such as Mobile web, as a country of the powerful IT industry.
Only thirty days remain now. These are expected to be the busiest days for the Organizing Committee of IPVS 2012, which we will spend many hours in preparing for a most memorable
Congress ever. Look forward to IPVS 2012!!