Beurs van Berlage

Hosting an inclusive business event

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Beurs van Berlage

The Beurs van Berlage is a hotspot that cannot be missed during your visit to Amsterdam. It is the vibrant meeting point in the heart of the city. One thing is certain, there is always something to do in the unique historical building! Have a bite to eat in one of our restaurants, visit the Tony's Chocolonely shop for the tastiest chocolate, order the most delicious fish dishes in The Seafood Bar, rent a bicycle or use one of the lockers in the Bike Rental and discover the secrets of Sherlocked. Check out events and the expositions in our calendar.

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Inclusivity has become a key value for leading businesses around the globe. A positive development that also influences modern business events. An understandable trend, because managing inclusiveness on your event impacts the satisfaction of attendees, as well as the overall event success. So, what can you do to welcome every single attendee? In this article you’ll find a list of recommendations to ensure guests of any gender, ethnicity, age, ability, and beyond feel more than included at your event.

Blog Hosting an inclusive business event: 5 ways to make all attendees feel valued

23 April 2024

Inclusivity has become a key value for leading businesses around the globe. A positive development that also influences modern business events. An understandable trend, because managing inclusiveness on your event impacts the satisfaction of attendees, as well as the overall event success. So, what can you do to welcome every single attendee? In this article you’ll find a list of recommendations to ensure guests of any gender, ethnicity, age, ability, and beyond feel more than included at your event.

1. Design inclusive event sessions

An inclusive event considers the diverse needs of its attendees, recognising that people have different ways of learning, participating, and engaging. Without thoughtful planning, certain groups may feel excluded or find it difficult to fully participate. Common examples are:

  • Attendees with visual impairments, who may struggle with presentations that rely heavily on visual aids without verbal descriptions. Similarly, those with auditory impairments may find sessions challenging if there is no sign language interpretation or captioning available. Here’s what you can do:
    ○ Offer audio descriptions for visual content
    ○ Ensure all videos are captioned
    ○ Provide sign language interpreters or use technical applications that offer the spoken information in written text forms.
  • Individuals who are neurodiverse or have cognitive disabilities, might find fast-paced, information-dense sessions overwhelming. To avoid this, consider:
    ○ Designing sessions with clear, concise information
    ○ Allow attendees to take breaks and provide quiet rooms, where attendees can retreat if they feel overwhelmed
    ○ Offer materials ahead of time for pre-session review
  • Introverts might find large group discussions or activities that require speaking up in front of everyone challenging. Small group discussions or activities and event apps that allow for anonymous Q&A sessions can help. This way, you give those uncomfortable with public speaking a voice, ensuring their insights are heard and valued.
  • Participants for whom the event’s primary language is not their first language, could struggle to keep up with the pace of presentations or to engage in discussions. To include non-native speakers you can:
    ○ Offer simultaneous translation services
    ○ Ensure that materials are available in multiple languages, including glossaries for technical or industry-specific terms
    ○ Encourage speakers to talk clearly and at a measured pace
    ○ Use technical applications that translate spoken information into written text, translated in the desired language.

2. Embrace gender inclusivity

The commitment to inclusivity on your business event includes a modern understanding of gender. If you want to ensure your event is gender-inclusive, you could consider the following measures:

  • Provide options on registration forms for attendees to specify their pronouns including he/him, she/her, they/them, and an option for attendees to specify if they use pronouns not listed. Use these pronouns on nametags, conference materials, and within event apps to respect and affirm everyone’s gender identity.
  • Convert some of the restrooms to gender-neutral facilities. Set up clear signage and communication prior to and during the event about the location and availability of these restrooms.
  • Train your event staff on gender inclusivity, including the use of correct pronouns, understanding of gender diversity, and how to create a welcoming environment for all attendees.
  • Ensure that your event’s content, including panels, speakers, and presentations, addresses or is mindful of gender issues where relevant. Striving for a gender-balanced list of speakers and presenters also reflects a commitment to inclusivity.

3. Cater to all attendees with diverse culinary options

Catering at events goes beyond merely providing food; it’s an opportunity to make all attendees feel welcomed and valued by acknowledging diverse dietary needs. Inclusive catering recognises a spectrum of dietary restrictions, preferences, and cultural practices. A few ways to ensure everyone enjoys your event’s catering services are:

  • Broad dietary options
    Make sure there are options to choose from for everyone, offering vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, halal, and kosher choices.
  • Clear communication and labelling
    Verify that the catering service labels all food items with ingredients and potential allergens, as well as symbols indicating if they meet specific dietary criteria. This transparency allows attendees to make informed choices and feel confident in the food they consume.
  • Culturally diverse menu selections
    Incorporate a selection of dishes that reflect a variety of cultural traditions and cuisines. This not only caters to attendees from different backgrounds, but also enriches the dining experience for all participants, offering a taste of global diversity.

4. Establish a clear code of conduct

Setting expectations for conduct reinforces your event’s commitment to inclusivity. Outline expected behaviours, emphasising the importance of a respectful environment. Your event’s code of conduct should:

  • Explicitly prohibit discrimination and harassment of any kind including discrimination based on gender identity and expression.

  • Provide clear guidelines for reporting and addressing grievances.

  • Demonstrate a commitment to a safe and inclusive environment.

5. Prioritise accessibility

A truly inclusive event is accessible to everyone. Choose venues that are welcoming to all attendees, including those with disabilities. This involves:

  • Ensuring all areas are wheelchair accessible and making sure they are easy to navigate for everyone, including attendees with visual impairments
  • A schedule with sufficient breaks, which allows everyone to move comfortably between locations
  • Offering virtual access to sessions for those who cannot physically move between spaces quickly

Building an inclusive event is about creating an environment where diversity is not just accommodated, but celebrated. The goal is to create an event at which everyone, regardless of their personal or physical challenges, can participate fully, learn, and contribute to the success of the event.

Are you hosting a business event in the near future? Ask us about our inclusivity facilities or other services. Contact us via +31 20 531 33 55 or via events@beursvanberlage.com.

Beurs van Berlage

Sustainability is teamwork

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Beurs van Berlage

The Beurs van Berlage is a hotspot that cannot be missed during your visit to Amsterdam. It is the vibrant meeting point in the heart of the city. One thing is certain, there is always something to do in the unique historical building! Have a bite to eat in one of our restaurants, visit the Tony’s Chocolonely shop for the tastiest chocolate, rent a bicycle or use one of the lockers in the Bike Rental and discover the secrets of Sherlocked.

Check out events and the expositions in our calendar.

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“A historic building can’t be sustainable, right?” We hear that question a lot, and our reply is always the same: “Well, we absolutely work green.” In this article, Willemijn de Vet (our marketing manager) explains the green initiatives of the Beurs, and how we grow more sustainable every day. Working together is essential to achieve that – inside and outside the organisation.

Blog Sustainability is teamwork: how the Beurs van Berlage is working as green as possible

19 September 2023

Willemijn de Vet explains why the Beurs van Berlage believes in sustainability: “We mainly organise multi-day, international conferences. The flights and trash of these events alone result in a large carbon footprint. Pre-covid, we already looked into ways to improve our sustainability – where did we stand as far as Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) went? Several taskforces were set up and our employees were actively engaged in the subject, which resulted in many ideas and plans. These initiatives ground to a halt when covid broke out, but we picked it up afterwards. As it turned out, small sustainability projects already existed throughout the entire organisation. They were just never written down.” These separate initiatives had to be centralised. After all, sustainability is teamwork.

Green Globe certificate

To further shape our sustainability policy, the Beurs looked into sustainability certification. This led us to the Green Globe Standard, international certification for the travel and tourism industry. “That trajectory provided us a framework to evaluate and improve with. For instance, we were asked how we handled our trash, and what kind of electricity we used. It resulted in a list of things we did right and aspects to improve upon. In many areas we were already heading into the right direction. Many people believe you can’t take certain initiatives when you have an historic building, such as installing double-paned windows or solar panels. But there are still a lot of green options left. Ultimately, it’s already sustainable to use a century-old building and giving it the right to exist.” Eventually the Beurs was successfully certified, making it the first Dutch conference centre with a Green Globe certificate.

Greener each day

This trajectory also led to the continuously improved CSR policy. “We pondered which aspects of sustainability should be part of our DNA, to form the foundation of our green policy. One of the main pillars: we are not just throwing out everything non-sustainable. For instance, some parts of the building still don’t have LED lights, and we only replace them with sustainable lights when they’re broken. Furthermore, taking green initiatives often means working closely with Monument Conservation. We cannot just add double-paned windows since it changes the outlook of the building. But we can work together to choose a sustainable window that looks the same.”

Smart air circulation

The Beurs actively invests in innovations, such as ventilation. As summer passed, a lot of warmth stayed inside the building – couldn’t that be used for cold winter days? De Vet: “We set up pumps that keep hot air inside throughout winter. When it’s too cold in one room and hot in another, the system will fix that. The same thing happens in summer, only with cold air. Now we don’t need air conditioning and we consume less gas in winter. At the same time the system circulates fresh air – we don’t pump around ‘used’ oxygen. This has been a huge investment, especially for a historic building, but fortunately it was possible.”

Improving sustainability with suppliers and customers

You can’t be sustainable alone. The Beurs is depending on many partners and suppliers, such as our catering service. “Currently, we achieved a seventy percent garbage reduction in our kitchens, but there is still a lot of residual waste. For that reason, we actively ask our suppliers to reconsider their packaging materials. Could fish be delivered without the plastic wrapping? Could the coffee cups be made of renewable paper? Our partners responded positively to this, and all signed our sustainable selling policy. They agreed to inform us about environment-friendly alternatives, to align with our green objectives. Additionally, we advise our customers on how to organise sustainable events. Are there any green alternatives for the plastic name plates they’re requesting, for example? The Green Globe certificate was just the beginning – now we’re taking it to the next level.”

Would you like to know more about sustainability at the Beurs van Berlage? Download our infographic

Hotspot since 1903

Since the year 1903 the Beurs van Berlage has been a charming international hotspot. A building with grandeur and the place to be in the soul of Amsterdam where special things happen every day. Events, fairs, exhibitions and prestigious conferences.

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Beurs van Berlage

Finally back on location

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Beurs van Berlage

The Beurs van Berlage is a hotspot that cannot be missed during your visit to Amsterdam. It is the vibrant meeting point in the heart of the city. One thing is certain, there is always something to do in the unique historical building! Have a bite to eat in one of our restaurants, visit the Tony’s Chocolonely shop for the tastiest chocolate, rent a bicycle or use one of the lockers in the Bike Rental and discover the secrets of Sherlocked.

Check out events and the expositions in our calendar.

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After two years with few to none events, there’s a new need for unforgettable live events. This could be a festival, or a concert. But this need also applies to business events. Who wouldn’t want to visit a unique conference on a top-notch location, after all those online meetings? With this blog, we’d like to share three tips to help you organise such an event.

Blog Finally back on location: the business event as a total experience

21 september 2022

Choose a building with ambiance

A good conference has a program filled with inspiring talks and workshops, but it’s of course also the perfect opportunity to meet new people. That wasn’t so easy online. Conversations will go even more smoothly when you are in a conference centre with the right ambiance. Did you pick a building with a rich history? You’ll notice that’s a great topic for discussion itself; it could even be a good icebreaker. This way, a good ambiance establishes a bigger and more direct feeling of togetherness.

Make the city an integral part of the experience

A total experience doesn’t start the moment you arrive at your conference location, but earlier. Choosing the right city contributes strongly to an unforgettable event. The prospect of the trip itself leads to anticipation – voorpret, as we would say in Dutch: fun in advance – especially when you invite guests from abroad. Wouldn’t it be nice to combine the conference with a great city trip, for example? A congress in Amsterdam is a nice opportunity to finally visit the Rijksmuseum or the Van Gogh Museum. Or you can show your visitors the business centre of the Netherlands: the Zuidas.

Call in an expert

If you want to be sure of a magnificent business event, call in an expert. An excellent conference centre doesn’t only host your event, but also helps you to create a compelling programme. The Beurs van Berlage loves to get in touch with you. We have years of experience in organising conferences, meetings and other (business) events, so we know exactly what we have to pay attention to. Based on your wishes and needs, we’ll prepare a complete package: from the catering menu, to booking nearby hotels. All of these elements – as well as an enthusiastic audience of course – will create an unforgettable experience for your guests.

Would you like to know more? Download our infographic “Conference as a Service”.

Discover the Beurs

Has your interest been aroused and would you like to know more about the activities in the Beurs van Berlage? Have a look in our calendar or contact us.

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Beurs van Berlage

Our well thought out Plan B

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Beurs van Berlage

The Beurs van Berlage is a hotspot that cannot be missed during your visit to Amsterdam. It is the vibrant meeting point in the heart of the city. One thing is certain, there is always something to do in the unique historical building! Have a bite to eat in one of our restaurants, visit the Tony’s Chocolonely shop for the tastiest chocolate, rent a bicycle or use one of the lockers in the Bike Rental and discover the secrets of Sherlocked.

Check out events and the expositions in our calendar.

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To guarantee the success of your event, you don’t want to leave anything to chance. The Beurs van Berlage provides you with a well thought out plan B, so that your event can proceed without any worries.

In this blog, we discuss the five most important parts of this plan. We think of everything, so that you only have to focus on the organisation of your event. 

Blog Our well thought out plan B

29 August 2022

To guarantee the success of your event, you don’t want to leave anything to chance. The Beurs van Berlage provides you with a well thought out plan B, so that your event can proceed without any worries.

In this blog, we discuss the five most important parts of this plan. We think of everything, so that you only have to focus on the organisation of your event.

  1. Two fibre optic lines
    An internet connection is the lifeline during an event. If the connection is lost, online  participants can no longer take part and you will miss out on many visitors. For this reason the Beurs van Berlage has two stable fibre optic lines. If one of these connections fails, then everything is seamlessly switched across to a different line. You have no need to worry about the connection.
  1. Alternative equipment available
    Along with a stable internet connection and a correctly working platform, audiovisual equipment (AV) is also of crucial importance during a hybrid event. The failure of an LED screen, microphone or overhead projector leads to annoying situations. The Beurs van Berlage has alternative equipment in house, so that you can transfer to a new installation within an hour. That provides greater assurance.
  1. Fast replacement of personnel or suppliers
    Personnel remains an important part of your event, also during a hybrid event. What happens if some of the employees suddenly have to go into quarantine? To address this challenge, we work with various agencies, that can quickly provide a replacement team. We are never dependent on one party. This also applies also for the suppliers with which we work.
  1. What happens if your speaker cannot come?
    It happens that a speaker or presenter is suddenly not available, for example, because he is not allowed to travel. The Beurs van Berlage makes use of advanced technology, by which a hologram of the speaker is projected onto the stage. This enables the speaker to connect remotely, so that a keynote or session can still take place.
  1. A back-up for the online platform
    The online platform provides an important base during an online event: your online participants watch the live streams and enter into interaction via the online platform. But what if that platform, for whatever reason, is not accessible? In that case we provide an alternative. All online participants are sent a new link, so that they can immediately continue watching via a different environment.
  1. Quickly switch from a live event to a hybrid or online event
    The Beurs van Berlage has a plan B for all the technical challenges confronting your event and offers maximum flexibility. Was your event going to take place completely live, but due to circumstances this is no longer possible? Then we can switch over, in no time at all, to a hybrid or completely online event. In this way, your event can still take place.

Hotspot since 1903

Since the year 1903 the Beurs van Berlage has been a charming international hotspot. A building with grandeur and the place to be in the soul of Amsterdam where special things happen every day. Events, fairs, exhibitions and prestigious conferences.

View showcases

Want to know more?

Are you interested and would you like to further discuss the possibilities for your conference or event? We are ready for you!

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Beurs van Berlage

The future of IT available in the Beurs van Berlage

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Beurs van Berlage

The Beurs van Berlage is a hotspot that cannot be missed during your visit to Amsterdam. It is the vibrant meeting point in the heart of the city. One thing is certain, there is always something to do in the unique historical building! Have a bite to eat in one of our restaurants, visit the Tony’s Chocolonely shop for the tastiest chocolate, rent a bicycle or use one of the lockers in the Bike Rental and discover the secrets of Sherlocked.

Check out events and the expositions in our calendar.

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Well-functioning IT is indispensable during a successful event. Live streams, live polls, TV broadcasts, live connections, cloud solutions, paperless registration modules, zoom meetings, production office, speaker-ready rooms, separate event networks; it demands a humongous effort from an IT infrastructure. With the ultra-modern IT infrastructure and the installation of Wi-Fi 6, the Beurs van Berlage is not only fully prepared for the digital events of the future, but is also at the forefront with her IT-infrastructure.

Blog The future of IT available in the Beurs van Berlage

15 februari 2022

Well-functioning IT is indispensable during a successful event. Live streams, live polls, TV broadcasts, live connections, cloud solutions, paperless registration modules, zoom meetings, production office, speaker-ready rooms, separate event networks; it demands a humongous effort from an IT infrastructure. With the ultra-modern IT infrastructure and the installation of Wi-Fi 6, the Beurs van Berlage is not only fully prepared for the digital events of the future, but is also at the forefront with her IT-infrastructure.

In recent months, while it has been deafeningly quiet in the event world, IT partner H&S Computer Services has been quite busy instead. The old Beurs van Berlage IT infrastructure was scrutinised and critically examined how we could make it future-proof in an increasingly digital world. The result is more than 6 kilometres of shielded cabling, 100 managed Wi-Fi 6 access points, very powerful routers, firewall and switches, and a flexible bandwidth of 1.5Gb to 10GB that can be used flexibly. Switches and routers are the backbone of the network. They are continuously monitored and configurations can be made remotely or locally.

In addition to the existing fibre optic internet connection, a second fibre optic connection was realised. The Beurs van Berlage has chosen to enter into a partnership with two independent fibre optic parties, each with their own specialism, so that risks are spread, speed is optimised and the event organiser can be offered a high level of operational reliability.

Part of the fibre can also be configured for live TV or radio broadcasts. A direct connection to the Media Gateway and Master Control room (live TV switching centre) in Hilversum is possible. A live TV broadcast in another country or continent or live streaming to (a) YouTube (channel) are also possible.

Wi-Fi 6 is the latest Wi-Fi standard. The handling of data is at least 4 times better than that of Wi-Fi 5. In general, this does not immediately lead to faster internet, but it does ensure a faster and more stable connection within the network. Setting up and connecting a separate network has always been possible in the Beurs van Berlage, but the high speed within this network is new. Does a speaker want to make last-minute changes to their presentation during your event? This can be done in our speaker-ready room, after which the presentation can easily be sent to the stage by means of a direct connection. Is your speaker in America and is he presenting via a live stream? Then he can easily upload the presentation to the separate cloud server, allowing him to make last-minute adjustments to his presentation.

The new wireless technology of Wi-Fi 6 also provides better Wi-Fi coverage, which is not entirely unimportant during events in a building of more than 170,000 ft2. These wireless facilities can handle large numbers of users at the same time. In addition, it's nice to know that Wi-Fi 6 is getting better and better as time goes by, as more and more devices, such as mobile phones, fully support Wi-Fi 6.

But not everything has to be over the internet. Suppose you are organising a medical conference and you want to show live images of an operation during the conference. Here, details and ultra-sharp images without delay are important. This could be done via the internet, but there is a risk of delay there. In this case we can define a direct route to the hospital in question via a direct glass route.

In short, with our state-of-the-art IT infrastructure and the installation of Wi-Fi 6, the future of IT is already available today in the Beurs van Berlage. If you are curious about the technical details of our IT infrastructure, download our info sheet.

Would you like to know more about the trends and possibilities of hybrid events? Download our ‘The event of the future’ report to read the latest trends, so you don’t leave anything to chance.


Hotspot since 1903

Since the year 1903 the Beurs van Berlage has been a charming international hotspot. A building with grandeur and the place to be in the soul of Amsterdam where special things happen every day. Events, fairs, exhibitions and prestigious conferences.

View showcases

Want to know more?

Are you interested and would you like to further discuss the possibilities for your conference or event? We are ready for you!

Contact