‘Boosting international recognition for ageing conference’

International Federation on Ageing (IFA) Global Conference




The social and economic impact of ageing populations is an escalating global challenge. The International Federation on Ageing (IFA) Global Conference, held every two years, aims to address this by helping communities share information and collectively come up with solutions.

Arinex was appointed by host organisation the Council on the Ageing (COTA) to deliver the 13th International Federation on Ageing Global Conference 2016. Held in Brisbane at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre, the Conference had three aims; to offer an exciting and engaging program, to allow for information exchange and networking, and to increase the profile of COTA Queensland and the International Federation on Ageing both locally and internationally.

Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre  BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA

Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA




The 13th Global Conference for IFA offered a platform to ultimately support and empower rapidly ageing populations worldwide. The issue of ageing populations was particularly relevant to the host country, as Australia has been identified as having a rapidly ageing population.

IFA2016 invited decision makers, practitioners, researchers, service providers and community members to meet in Brisbane to share experiences and research on population trends, and collectively come up with solutions.

'Disasters in an Ageing World' was the theme for IFA2016, while specific topics included Age Friendly Cities and Communities; Care and Support for Older People (Community and Residential); Elder Abuse, Law and Rights; and Income Protection and Security.

'International Federation on Ageing 13th Global Conference 2016'   BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA

'International Federation on Ageing 13th Global Conference 2016' BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA



Arinex were tasked with managing and resolving the following Conference challenges:

  • Benchmarking - Outdated statistics from IFA 2010 were the only data available to benchmark from, as opposed to the more recent conferences in 2012 and 2014.

  • Approval process - A rolling review process, which had been in place prior to Arinex’ appointment, meant the client could not approve speakers until two weeks after submission. This meant the client was accepting presentations without seeing the full program.

  • Speaker crisis - A keynote speaker from a high-profile health organisation pulled out from speaking one week prior to the conference.

  • Multiple rooms - A packed program of 11 concurrent streams yet only 550 delegates meant that some speakers faced the prospect of presenting to half-empty rooms.

'International Federation on Ageing 13th Global Conference 2016'   BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA

'International Federation on Ageing 13th Global Conference 2016' BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA



Challenges were overcome after Arinex implemented the following solutions:

  • In order to move on from the old Conference statistics and appropriately manage client expectations, Arinex presented a number of worst-case scenario budgets. These predictions were downgraded from the original expectation of 1,000 delegates, and helped the client set realistic targets to avoid disappointment.

  • Arinex’ in-house technology program, eOrganiser, was introduced to allow the Brisbane-based COTA committee member and Canada-based IFA committee member to work on the program together in real time. It allowed full control and live information.

  • Federal Government support had been secured one month out from Conference, which was later used to help alleviate anxiety when the keynote speaker pulled out. To compensate for the cancelled speaker, Arinex organised a panel discussion instead, which included a number of government representatives. According to delegates, this panel became a stand-out presentation in IFA2016.

  • To address the disconcerting prospect of having half-filled rooms during speaker presentations, Arinex’ in-house eMobilise App was used and promoted throughout Conference. The app provided delegates with a live program including last-minute room changes, which helped achieve strong audience numbers as reported by speakers.






Attracting over 530 delegates and with almost 500 abstracts received, IFA2016 was an engaging platform to promote and discuss the challenge of ageing populations. The government funding and support provided helped deliver a successful result.

The client, the Council on the Ageing (COTA), said it felt the Conference was fantastic for its brand recognition and profile, not only for COTA Australia but internationally too.



“I was highly impressed by Arinex. Their communication, total support, professionalism, enthusiasm and intricate knowledge of managing international meetings made them the easy choice to be our appointed PCO for the International Federation of Ageing Global Conference.”

– Sue Hendy, International Federation on Ageing 13th Global Conference 2016

BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA |   © Rodney Topor/ Flickr

BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA | © Rodney Topor/ Flickr




Arinex Pty Ltd is an Australian-owned company founded in 1973 by Managing Director Roslyn McLeod OAM. Fuelled by the ethos of enabling its staff to deliver effective solutions in a highly creative and professional way, Arinex is a trend setter delivering the combination of care and capability in collaborative partnerships.

With offices in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth, Arinex has a sound understanding of the Australian marketplace, cultural differences and years of international experience.  Dedicated to moving with the times, Arinex recognises that the approach to positive congress outcomes is a result of reshaping approaches to achieve client goals in a rapidly changing marketplace.  Arinex values the INCON Partnership as a vital tool in its global network.

Congress, event and partial services management are the broad spectrum that make up the Arinex portfolio of services with a particular emphasis on technology the backbone of modern congress management.

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INCON is a global partnership of trusted conference and association management companies, whose unique collaboration results in the design and delivery of innovative and impactful client events. INCON Partners operate in over 170 destinations from over 81 global offices with a staff of 3,500 employees spread throughout the world.