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Record Attendance at BAA’s 19th Annual Conference: A Message from Our Events Team

CJ Association Management (CJAM) proudly organised the organisation’s largest event to date, the British Academy of Audiology’s (BAA) 19th Annual Conference, held over two eventful days from November 2 in Coventry. With a remarkable delegate count exceeding 640, this conference set a new benchmark for audiology gatherings.

CJAM started working with BAA in January 2022 and the 19th annual conference, which is a cornerstone in the association’s calendar, was a clear focus from day one.

Venue: Coventry Building Society Arena
Date: November 2nd-3rd 2023
Delegates – 640
Lectures/Speakers –
Breakout rooms –
Exhibitors – 50
Sponsors – 5 main
Delegate bags – 900
Conference Brochure

Any other interesting stats??
CJAM worked with the client to determine the best approach to not only marketing and monetising the event, but the full logistics process from start to finish, including securing the venue, sponsors, recruiting delegates and the execution of the two-day occasion including refreshments, AV and event collateral. The on-ground events team were available across the course of the event, applying their well honed event management skills to ensure everything ran smoothly. CJAM also coordinated and curated the event branding, design and physical collateral including delegate bags, signage, pop ups, table plans and brochures.

The event kicked off in style at the Coventry Building Society Arena, providing shelter from the rainbands of Storm Ciarán and opening with a resounding roar inside a football stadium. A diverse and engaged congregation, including over 640 delegates, organisers, and representatives from the hearing industry and related professions, gathered around the trade exhibition area for coffee and networking before the BAA’s inaugural speeches and lectures commenced on the second floor.

In a cabaret-style hall with seating arrangements around large round tables, BAA President Samantha Lear set the tone for an impactful morning, addressing the audience with a message of resilience. She emphasised the need to prepare for a challenging year ahead.

The event took an insightful turn even before President Lear introduced the first lecture, titled “UK paediatric audiology: climbing a mountain or climbing out of a hole?” The audience’s attention was gripped by the challenges faced in audiology over the past two years, particularly concerning the failings in audiology care within NHS Scotland.

The Bamford Lecture, delivered by the newly appointed BAA Vice President, Claire Benton, a Consultant Clinical Scientist (Audiology) at Nottingham University Hospitals NHS trust, resonated with the profession’s frustrations. Benton’s speech, laced with irony and frankness, highlighted the failings in audiology, the finger-pointing that ensued, and the repercussions of the process of review and recommendations conducted by NHS and government managers.

Benton passionately accepted responsibility on behalf of her professional colleagues, expressing deep concern for the estimated 3,000 child hearing loss cases missed in diagnoses and the resulting damage to lives. She didn’t shy away from addressing the challenges of funding shortages, recruitment crises, and training deficiencies, delivering a list of well-reasoned and strongly advised recommendations. Her call for standards of quality assurance and greater professional discipline from audiologists resonated with the audience, and she emphatically stated, “We should not be marking our own homework.”

The BAA may publish Benton’s entire speech, making it essential reading for audiologists. Look forward to an interview with Benton in Audiology News UK and online on Audiology Worldnews in 2024.

The BAA’s 2023 Conference spanned two days and featured an expansive sector exhibition space with over 50 stands, an extensive program of educational lectures from international speakers, the largest-ever research poster section for the event, breakout sessions, workshops, and ample networking opportunities, including a disco-themed party on the first night.

CJAM and the BAA proudly confirmed that this year’s conference drew the highest attendance ever with over 640 delegates, potentially making it the best-attended audiology conference in the UK to date.

If you’d like to know more about how CJAM could take care of your association’s next event, then get in touch with our team, who can help take the hassle and strain out of providing an unforgettable professional development opportunity for your members and board.

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