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The European Association Summit

By Association Professionals, for Association Professionals

22 May 2024, The Merode

European Association Summit: Text

The European Association Summit is the annual gathering for Association professionals across Europe! During the past eleven years, the summit has established itself as a reference for knowledge exchange among Association professionals in Europe. Organised by ESAE, the 12th edition will be designed by and for Association professionals, focusing on co-creation, knowledge sharing among peers, and celebrating excellence in the Association community..

European Association Summit: About

'As Association executives ourselves, we are sensitive to the needs and topics that matter the most to our peers. We want to create a Summit designed by Association professionals, for Association professionals, aimed at advancing knowledge-sharing for all. We hope to build on the success of past editions by being inclusive and collaborative across our community.'

Mike Morrissey

ESAE President & CEO, European Cancer Organisation

European Association Summit: Quote


European Association Summit: Image

The Summit will feature over 10 sessions covering the current needs of Association professionals. It will include high-level panel discussions among Association leaders and EU policymakers, co-creation sessions focusing on strategy and leadership, and interactive workshops curated by the ESAE's communities of practice and led by their respective co-chairs.

9:00 - 9:45

Start the day by exchanging with peers over good food!

Registrations & Welcome Coffee

9:45 - 10:00

Welcome and address by the ESAE President, Mike Morrissey.

Welcome & Address by the President

10:00 - 11:00

Building Bridges - Associations & EU policymaking

Panel Discussion - Start the day with insights into how Associations act as crucial links between civil society and policymaking. This panel, featuring EU policymakers and Association Executives, explores their pivotal role in shaping political debates. Weeks before the European Elections, you will gain fresh perspectives on how Associations, representing diverse industries and professions, can inform policymaking for the next EU mandate.

11:00 - 11:30

Discuss what you've learned and get ready for your community session.

Networking Coffee

11:30 - 12:30

How to Structure your Association's Advocacy Around a Manifesto

Community session - Following up on our session on Policy Manifestos and Associations Impact at European Parliament, this session will dive into what Associations can do with their manifestos. From promotion and crafting compelling spin-offs to measuring success, join us for a forward-looking and open discussion on how to make the most of your manifesto. 

11:30 - 12:30

Crafting Events to Engage Multi-Generational Communities

Community session - "Nothing about us, without us!" This session will dive into the keys to designing events that bridge generational gaps. Dispel clichés with a panel of young professionals and representatives from a range of sectors, who will share their motivations and expectations. We will explore case studies, creative brainstorming, and lateral thinking to generate 'out-of-the-box' ideas for crafting inclusive events. Together, let's create experiences that resonate across diverse generations.

11:30 - 12:30

Engraining Sustainability into your Association’s DNA

Community Session - Sustainability and Legacy are two key concepts for any Association that wants to make a positive impact in the world. This session will explore how can Associations embed these values into their culture, strategy and operations. You will hear from professionals from different fields and backgrounds: Associations that have successfully integrated sustainability and those who are just starting their journey. Engage in open dialogue, ask questions, share experiences, and learn from best practices. 

12:30 - 13:30

Connect with peers and get ready for the afternoon!

Lunch Break

13:30 - 15:00

Leading, Managing, Innovating - Finding the Perfect Mix

Co-Creation Session - Association leaders face the complex task of aligning strategy with diverse stakeholder needs amid external trends and internal challenges. This session provides leaders with a hands-on opportunity to share experiences, discuss challenges, and collaboratively devise solutions. It will be guided by a panel representing various association facets, from trade associations to professional societies, and management companies—both small and large. Join fellow leaders in a unique opportunity to learn, share, and innovate solutions to the challenges they face.

15:30 - 16:30

Mastering DEI Strategies for Organisational Excellence

Community Session - Dive into the concept of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and its impact on strategy and organizational culture. We will showcase the experience of an Association rolling out Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DEI) actions in their daily work. This insight on the application of DEI in the way we work, along with its monitoring, will allow for a roundtable to discuss best practices but also what is still missing in the understanding and management of this important aspect, that will be key for the Associations of tomorrow.

15:30 - 16:30

Beyond Congresses: Sustainable Funding for Health Associations

Community Session - Health Associations typically rely on a single annual Congress, along with its registration fees and sponsorships, to fund their operations for a full year or even longer. This session will explore any other potential sources of revenue that you may not have yet considered, and answer the following questions: How innovative can we be in terms of generating revenue? And how can we effectively persuade our Boards and teams to pursue these opportunities? 

15:30 - 16:30

Harnessing Digital and AI Tools for Excellence and Performance

Community Session - Why should AI top your Association's priority list? Dive into the complexity of choosing and managing AI tools, addressing the challenges of digital transformation, and exploring new possibilities. Join our comprehensive session covering generative AI, the evolving landscape of work, economic potential, operational integration, the EU AI Act, required governance, and the future of generative AI. Don't miss this chance to gain valuable insights on leveraging AI for Association excellence and performance!

16:45 - 17:30

The Future of Associations: What Role Will You Play?

Panel Discussion - What will be the role of Associations in the coming years? Hear insights from high-level Association Leaders on how Associations will lead the way in positioning their members for optimal success. Don't miss this insightful exploration of the evolving landscape of Associations and their pivotal roles in the years ahead.

17:30 - 18:30

Keynote speech.

Breaking Barriers, Building Futures: How You Can Drive Innovation

18:00 - 18:45

Get ready for the Awards ceremony!

Networking Reception

18:45 - 19:15

European Association Awards Ceremony

Discover the winners of the European Association Awards, and get inspired by the knowledge and efforts team members who usually stay out of the spotlight. The Ceremony will be followed by a walking dinner.

19:15 - 21:00

Celebrate the Association community with peers!

Walking Dinner

European Association Summit: List
European Association Summit: Team Members
Woman Artist

River Watts


European Association Summit: Price List


Priority registration with a significant discount is available for ESAE members. Click below for more information if you are not yet a member.

Early Bird Summit & Awards


Only for ESAE members, from 22 February to 22 March 2024.

Full Price Summit & Awards


Discounted price for ESAE members.

Opening on 22 March 2024

Group Price Summit & Awards


Join with up to 5 staff members from your Association! Discounted price for ESAE members from 22 March to 21 May 2024.

Opening on 22 March 2024

Full Price Summit & Awards


For non-ESAE members.

Group Price Summit & Awards


Join with up to 5 staff members from your Association! Registrations will be open from 7 March to 21 May 2024.

  • Group tickets are for 5 persons maximum. Want to bring more team members? Contact directly the ESAE secretariat at

  • Registrations are for Association professionals only and must be approved by the ESAE Secretariat.

  • All prices are subject to 21% VAT. 

  • If you are not an Association professional but are still interested in attending the Summit, check out our sponsorship packages below.

European Association Summit: Price List


The Merode, Place Poelaert 6, 1000 Brussels

Public transport:

  • BUS: 33 (Louise or Poelaert) 48 (Grand Sablon) 64 ( Porte de Namur)

  • Tram: 92-93 (Louise or Poelaert)

  • Metro: 6 (Louise)

Car Park:

Interparking Sablon–Poelaert: Interparking Sablon-Poelaert / Address: Place Poelart 4 at 1000 Brussels (100m from The Merode) 

The venue is easily accessible via public transport:

If you are coming by train, the nearest railway station is Brussels Midi only 1.5 km away from The Merode.

The nearest airport is the Brussels Zaventem International Airport in Brussels, which is located around 16 km away.

European Association Summit: Accessibility Policy

Contact us

ESAE, Square de Meeûs 38-40 | 1000 Brussels


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European Association Summit: Contact
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