IAFM - Funeral Museums
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FIAT-IFTA is the only internationally governed Funeral Federation with National, Active and Associate Members in more than 80 Countries.
By Katarzyna Supa, funeral innovation researcher, editor-in-chief THANOS magazine
The exhibition industry does not operate in a vacuum. It is an industry based on creating meeting spaces and building business and social relationships. Recently, it has been hit hard by a number of factors that have shaken the foundations of exhibitions - the COVID-19 pandemic, the war in Ukraine, the economic crisis, digital transformation, deglobalisation, climate change and demographic shifts. Factors that are or will be impacting the changes taking place in the trade fair industry are those related to the impact of new generations, ongoing technological transformation, especially those related to big data, running out of resources (raw material crisis), economic crisis, disrupted supply chains, aging population, health crises or wars of influence in the global economy.
In the face of an uncertain and dynamically changing environment, a feature of the trade fair of the future, like all business in general, should be resilience – the ability to adapt to changing conditions regardless of their magnitude or force; the ability to recover quickly from loss or being weakened; buoyancy; the power to bounce back quickly. It is now necessary to learn how to manage the change and adapt to an evolving environment in a flexible manner. It is necessary to think two-fold: on a short-term basis (allowing for quick reactions), as well as on a long-term basis (allowing for building resilience and preparing for future challenges). It is necessary to adopt the approach of a new normal rather than holding back, and waiting for the return of the patterns one had been accustomed to prior to the emergence of the crises.
We asked trade fair organizers, exhibitors and visitors what trade fairs mean to them from their perspective, what kind of trade fairs the funeral industry needs and what is the future of funeral trade shows. We hope that the many interesting perspectives and scenarios for the future of trade fairs gathered in this article will be a valuable contribution to the development of trade fairs for our industry.