Meetings No 28
The Metaverse: A Digital Reality
Atti Soenarso ponders the emergence of ‘metapresence.’
Cover Story
Carina Bauer
The IMEX Group will enter 2030 much more sustainable and regenerative.
Psychological Meetings
Tears in the Fabric: About Popular Culture and Morality
Hans Gordon on one’s liberties ending only where someone else’s liberties begin.
Hybrid+: A New Approach to Meeting Experiences
The project aims to build a strong position in hybrid experiences.
White Paper
The Future Role and Purpose of Convention Bureaux
Aims to shape a future vision for national CBs globally, including a visionary roadmap.
New Arena in Copenhagen for 7,000 Seated Guests
Providing new opportunities to host global events.
The Untact Mode
Korean Cases: Utilising Meeting Technology
The marriage between Korea’s ICT technology and meeting business appears in various forms.
Untact services
Untact: South Korea’s Plan for a Contact-Free Society
There will be an investment in technologies that enable untact services, such as robotics, drones and high-speed internet.
Green Ideas
Over the past 75 years, a new environmental canon has emerged.
Gothenburg Wins International Award for Sustainability Work
Global Destination Sustainability Movement winner for the fifth time in a row.
Three Trends Bound to Stay Beyond the Pandemic
Opinion: Three interesting trends that we need to capitalise on.
Glasgow’s Go Greener Toolkit Implements More Sustainable Practices
Aligning conference planning with the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
Structural Change
Berlin Questions: Africa as the Laboratory of the Future
Best-selling novelist Lesley Lokko on architecture, ‘race’ and culture.
Regaining the Confidence of Associa­tions Key Elements Destinations Cannot Afford to Miss
Opinion: Three key criteria for seducing organisations.
New Business Unit Strengthens Business Events in Bogota
Consolidates investment and events attraction strategy in a single entity.
Why I Write
The titular George Orwell essay makes Robin Sharma examine his own motivations.
Meeting Design
Humanity’s Problem Is a Meeting Problem
Paleolithic emotions, medieval institutions, and god-like technology.
Villa Copenhagen: A New Hub for Business Events
Honouring the ethos of charming old Europe expressed in Danish architectural heritage.
Regenerative Revolution
Hannuwa: A New Paradigm for Event Management
Supporting the business events industry on a transformative journey.
I Have a Feeling We’re Not in Kansas Anymore
Roger Kellerman on facing a world where old rules no longer apply.
Hotel News
World’s tallest hotel opens in Dubai 2024
The Ciel Tower hotel will soar 365 metres into the sky with 82 floors of luxury suites and serviced residences.
Hotels & Resorts
Accor Announces Global Launch of Its All-Inclusive Collection
Accelerating its expansion in the fast-growing market with a unique platform of multi-branded luxury and premium offers.
Hotel news
Ambitious Plans for Spectacular Scandic Holmenkollen Park
Modernised hotel reopens with 376 rooms and room for 1,200 conference visitors.
Changing of the guard
Peter King
to depart after 11 successful years.
hotel news
Hotel Sustainability Basics Launched at Leading Industry Summit in Manila
Set to drive responsible travel and tourism and to help every hotel address and improve their environmental impact.
hotell news
Scandic to Open Third Hotel in Tromsø
New hotel planned for 2025, with 305 rooms on 12 floors in the new Vervet area.

Global Business Travel’s Landmark Sustainability Study Reveals
What It Will Take to Get to a Greener Future.
Double gold for Austria Center Vienna
at German Stevie Awards
The man, the myth, the legend
Patrick Delaney Honoured With Hall of Fame Award
Travel trade veteran receives 2022 Hall of Fame award at annual AIPCO conference.
Scandic Kiruna
first commercial enterprise to open in new city center.
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The Metaverse: A Digital Reality

The concept of the metaverse is quickly becoming a buzzword in technology and business. The idea of the metaverse is that it will create new online spaces in which people’s interactions can be more multi-dimensional, where users can immerse themselves in digital content rather than simply viewing it.

The term metaverse comes from Snow Crash, a 1992 science fiction novel by Neil Stephenson in which human avatars and software demons inhabit a parallel 3D universe.

We have all experienced something of the metaverse during the pandemic. Many of our workplaces shifted from the physical to the digital to cope with lockdowns. Zoom or Teams became where our companies lived. Imagine that expanding out to all areas of life. Now, you have just imagined the metaverse.

Next year, Microsoft will introduce its virtual collaboration platform Mesh into Teams to merge the company’s mixed reality and improve meetings. Microsoft entered the metaverse chat through its Teams app just days after Facebook announced its rebranding to Meta.

The metaverse is a virtual world that blends aspects of digital technologies, including videoconferencing, games like Minecraft or Roblox, cryptocurrencies, email, virtual reality, social media and live streaming.

The key difference between the internet and the metaverse is the idea of presence. The internet is something we access, and the metaverse is something we can be present within. And that’s the big change.

Widespread metaverse usage could impact how companies and organisations operate in future. Platforms like Microsoft’s Mesh for Teams are making 3D metaverses seamlessly accessible for businesses. People can be present together in virtual spaces or rooms, rather than on-screen conferencing in 2D. Meeting participants can move freely between people and groups, collaborate, participate in workshops, have side conversations, and learn together as if in a physical space.

As the metaverse grows, if it does, it will create online spaces where user interactions are more multi-dimensional than current technology supports. Instead of just viewing digital content, users in the metaverse will be able to immerse themselves in a space where the digital and physical worlds converge.

There’s a window of opportunity right now, and we need to take advantage of it. Start planning, and you can both carve out your corner of the metaverse and prevent other companies from becoming gatekeepers between you and the next wave of digital.

We can expect the competition to be intense, with many interesting partnerships and alliances, epic failures, and spectacular developments that could challenge and change every aspect of human activity. Perhaps the metaverse will be the defining platform for interactivity as we move forward.

Time will tell whether we move from hybrid working to a permanent future in the metaverse. But until then, we know that offices companies and organisations must be ready to facilitate the modern workforce’s technological flexibility.

The metaverse will redefine what businesses are and how they should operate. Some companies are watching and learning. Those that don’t will be left behind.