Photo Credit: GIAF

The Geneva International Association Forum was launched by the ASSOCIATIONWORLD Foundation, in collaboration with the Geneva Convention Bureau and Congrex Switzerland, earlier this year.

The much-expected two-day event will bring together representatives of international and European associations, non-profit organizations, federations, professional societies, NGO’s and universities. Its primary goal is to establish an annual international leading platform for knowledge sharing in one of the world’s flagship host destinations for associations, Geneva.


Kai Troll


“Registration has now opened, and, at this stage, we are accommodating 60 attendees to the first edition of GIAF on a first-come, first-served basis. We believe that people will be mentally ready to come together in person again by mid-September, despite the safety measures that might still apply. Regardless of the Swiss government easing the regulations, the well-being and safety of our attendees, their families and their professional environments are of utmost importance to us. And, together with our venue and hospitality partner, we will ensure that the well-being, safety, and the running of a risk-free event has priority. Life with restrictions becomes the norm and we all have to come to terms with that for a longer period of time”, says Kai Troll, President of ASSOCIATIONWORLD and spokesperson of GIAF.

“The GIAF agenda is of course influenced by Covid-19 and the challenges that it confronted us with as association professionals. We want attendees to share their experiences, successes, downfalls. We want to focus on finding solutions to our common challenges, move forward and look at the opportunities that arise from Covid-19. We are all learning to rethink our associations and organizations. How we do business and how we lead our associations into the future is crucial. We are all more than excited about entering a new phase and starting face-to-face meetings again, in full compliance with all the government regulations for public events,” Troll adds.

Program Overview

Speakers will be announced on a weekly basis from next week on. The program includes topics highly relevant to the moment in time covering the following four pillars:

  • CEO IN ACTION: Emphasis will be placed on association leadership such as CEO’s, Secretary General’s, Managing Directors, etc. who will share best practices and solutions focused on Membership Change, new required Membership Models, Finances, HR Governance & Board Development, Board Succession Planning, Leadership & Management, Organizational Development.
  • COMMUNICATIONS / ADVOCACY / CAMPAIGNING: A reach-out to specialists in the fields of Strategic Communications, Advocacy, Campaigning and Lobbying and how Governments, Legislators, Institutions, High-level External Stakeholders with their calls to action can be influenced.
  • INCOME GENERATION / RESOURCE DEVELOPMENT: Addressing experts working in the fields of Fundraising, Sponsorship Development, Exhibitions, Donor Development, High-Net-Worth Individual Donor Development, Foundation Funding, Corporate Business Development, Licensing, Diversification of Income Streams and/or other income generation-related topics.
  • INNOVATION / SUSTAINABILITY: Covering the needs of professionals active in innovative solutions related to sustainability, such as SDG’s, Events, Technology, Digitalization, Environment, Health, Operations.

GIAF, as one of the very first events to take place after the imposed measures over the last few months, will be that opportunity to get back to business and kick off the association gatherings once more.