ACTE summit ready to answer tough questions

European issues will be the focus of the international business travel
profession when the Association of Corporate Travel Executives convenes its global education conference in Munich, 21 - 23 October,
2007.In an unprecedented move, the association will conduct a European
Travel Summit (legislative leaders, industry authorities, and travel
management innovators) against a background of seminars and general
sessions based on analytical information generated during the event.
According to industry insiders, this is likely to result in volatile
debate on issues ranging from GDS evolution to privacy, to maintaining
European standards under pressure from foreign transport agreements.

“We’ll take our chances,” said ACTE’s Executive Director Susan Gurley.
“ACTE has never hesitated to address the hot issues, the difficult
questions, or the topics that may require reinventing the industry. Our
fall conference will provide a global overview of the industry, through
a sharp European perspective.”

 

The issues themselves have been proposed by a global network of travel
executives working in committee with ACTE to identify key topics and in
assigning a priority to the same. Yet Gurley contends that simply
identifying these issues is only the beginning. ACTE proposes to present
this data to EC government officials already attending the travel summit
portion of the event, along with recommendations for improvement or
change.

 

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“This conference has a dual purpose,” said Gurley. “We committed to
educating our membership on the latest travel management and cost
containment techniques, and informing representatives of the EC how
their actions impact our industry. Our goal is to foster a higher level
of communication between industry and government, while emphasizing
European concerns to a global travel industry.”

 

The association has already taken a stand favouring the preservation of
passenger privacy rights - as established by the EC - which could have
been reversed in the recent Open Skies agreement.

 

ACTE is ideally poised to emphasize the European position. The
association’s board is primarily European with US members in the
minority. Its educational foundation is virtually based in Britain. And
its conference program is composed of European speakers, presenters, and
panels selected for expertise and industry veteran status. The general
sessions for the Munich include:

 

*      Gianpiero Petriglieri, Affiliate Professor of Organisational
Behaviour, INSEAD.

 

Gianpiero Petriglieri, MD, is a leading expert on leadership,
experiential learning, and unconscious processes in individuals, groups
and organisations. His research and writing are regarded as the final
word on effective leadership development; the experience of becoming a
change professional; and the emotional dilemmas of high potential
managers. At INSEAD Gianpiero teaches “Leading People and Groups” in the
MBA programme, and conducts sessions on leadership, team dynamics, and
personal and professional change in executive education courses. He is
also Visiting Professor at CBS Executive, Copenhagen Business School,
Denmark.

 

*      Martin Walker, Senior Director of the Global Business Policy
Council, A. T. Kearney

 

Martin Walker is the Senior Director of the Global Business Policy
Council, a private think-tank for CEOs founded by the A T Kearney
business consultancy. He is also a syndicated columnist and
Editor-in-Chief Emeritus of United Press International. Previously, in
his 25 years as a journalist with The Guardian newspaper, he served as
bureau chief in Moscow and the United States, as well as European editor
and assistant editor.

 

A regular broadcaster on the BBC, National Public Radio and CNN, and
panellist on Inside Washington and The McLaughlin Show, he is also a
senior scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Centre for Scholars
in Washington DC, a senior fellow of the World Policy Institute at the
New School for Social Research in New York, and a contributing editor of
the Los Angeles Times’ Opinion section and of Europe magazine.

 

The trademark of ACTE conferences, intimate settings conducive to
results with direct access to key players, will not be compromised in
Munich. Furthermore, ACTE’s policy is to work with national and regional
organizations, not to compete for members.
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