by Sarah JF Braley | November 02, 2016

The fall 2016 Meetings Outlook report from Meeting Professionals International, released yesterday, shows an industry increasingly budgeting for more security and added risk-management details to their events. 

"The No. 1 thing they are budgeting for in 2017 is safety and security," said Bill Voegeli, president of Association Insights, which conducts the survey for the organization. The quarterly report also found that 15 percent of meeting professionals have increased threat awareness and response preparedness, and 14 percent said security has influenced destination selection. One-third of respondents (34 percent) expect their budgets to increase to cover security issues.

Despite such concerns, the forecast projects moderate growth in overall business conditions for the foreseeable future, a finding that has been consistently positive in earlier editions of the outlook this year. Sixty-seven percent of respondents cited favorable business conditions for the year ahead, up 4 percent over last quarter.

Attendance for live and virtual meetings continues to garner predictions of growth, by 1.9 percent and 2.4 percent, respectively.

In addition to security, 22 percent of those surveyed expect budget increases for new technology tools, and 10 percent said they are increasing their spend to include virtual experiences.

Click here to view the full report.