Freiburg – a city with collective enthusiasm for progress!

The collaboration of politicians, citizens, companies, start-ups and tourism/Convention Bureau ensures a sustainable progress in Freiburg that is quite unique.

The Convention Bureau is part of FWTM – Freiburg Wirtschaft Touristik und Messe GmbH & Co. KG, which is responsible for Marketing and Management of Tourism and Trade fair, and is a stakeholder of the City of Freiburg.

The numerous exemplary initiatives and projects across the city and its many stakeholders appear to come so natural that at first you don’t really recognize the utopia behind them. But slowly, as you discover the depth and consequence of the city’s strategy, it starts becoming a perfect case study for urban development.

What many cities and destinations are only just discovering has been in operation here for a long time. At practically all levels of the municipality and the private sector the goals to support innovations and to ensure jobs, a healthy environment and a high quality of life for the population are constantly on the screen – for all new projects.

Collaboration works in Freiburg, with everyone’s support and with collective enthusiasm.

But how does that relate to the meetings’ industry? It simply means that all the necessary elements of change facing climate crisis, society hardships, supplies’ scarcity of supplies and many more are being looked at in Freiburg since long. We thus have a perfect case study here for sustainable development in urban space

Many of those projects can add to the value of congresses or events held in the city. A perfect and sustainable infrastructure for business events is of course available, the Convention Bureau with Christina Fritsch and Iris Sohn is ready for all kinds of event planning. But on top of the regular service, this convention bureau knows it all – and brings in the abundant potential of case studies, projects and environmental initiatives to attract international business to Freiburg.

Convention Bureaus and their communication and marketing mix must be seen as strong spokes channels for city or regional development – they are out there in the world and speak to businesses and associations!

Companies or association events can then relate to existing key sectors for knowledge transfer or as innovative programs to their events.

Being a Destination Partner of the ecomice explorers program is one of such communication measures to reach out to new target groups for MICE for the city of Freiburg.

The Convention Bureau is an important piece in the “Green City” jigsaw puzzle, and a bit of history will make this even more impressive: Since as early as the 1970s, Freiburg set out to become an environmentally friendly city. Since then, the city has come up with many sustainable solutions and carried out numerous projects. The WE, the community, was, and still is, the focus at all times. With input from residents, businesses, scientists and researchers, educational institutions, churches, cultural organizations, and many other institutions, a unique Freiburg MIX has emerged, now known as “Green City Freiburg.”

As mentioned, this is a perfect role model for any politician, investment agency and tourism /convention directors, who look at creating a sustainable strategy involving all local stakeholders: the necessary mix of tourism/business events with economy and ecology – and including the civil society.

Let us have a closer look at some outstanding modules in the Green City Portal

  • One such feature is the Green City Office and its role in connecting the local projects with interested visitors.

As a “Green City,” Freiburg has become a model for many cities and communities across the globe. Each year, around 30,000 expert visitors from some 45 nations visit the city to get to know what is behind the model and the ideas.

The Green City Office was established within Freiburg’s city administration in 2008 with the aim of coordinating all the visitor delegations from politics, municipal administration, and the media from one central location.

  • Expert agencies and tour offers for the different areas of development

The meetings industry looks into creating new experiences and spaces for learning and to bring event participants in contact with local innovations. Here is a good example (might be a new way for local agencies -DMC’s?- to expand their services): Since 2011, four official Green City Freiburg partner agencies have been identified and commissioned by the Green City – they prepare customized itineraries for expert visitors from all over the world.

  • Freiburg is an active member in a number of International networks around the topic of sustainability

The City of Freiburg is a member of presently 8 international networks with regards to green cities and related issues. We pick ICLEI to give just one example.

“ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability” is the world’s leading network for sustainable development on the local level. Founded in 1990, ICLEI now includes more than 1,500 cities and regions worldwide. The European Secretariat is based here in Freiburg. Altogether, ICLEI has 17 offices across the globe.

Since 2007, the Green City Office has been the co-organizer of the “Local Renewables Freiburg” conference series with its partner ICLEI.

Since 2008 The Freiburg economic region – consisting of the City of Freiburg and the administrative districts of Breisgau-Hochschwarzwald and Emmendingen – maintains an innovative business development cluster with a special focus on the environmental and renewable energy sectors. Companies and institutions with international reputations, as well as many individual pioneers, have contributed to making this possible.
The areas of research and development, technology transfer and environmental education serve as motors in driving a regional economic portfolio covering solar and renewable energy technologies, energy efficiency, sustainability (also in buildings), and other green technologies. Especially important is the contribution of small- and medium-sized enterprises representing trades, crafts, production and services.

These are just a few of many ideas to be mixed into a new generation of MICE programs, or to learn from the strategy of the Freiburg MIX.

Freiburg Convention Bureau will be at IMEX in Frankfurt, Stand F 100


ecomice is a consultancy and PR / marketing unit for sustainable legacy and supply chains in destinations.

It is an initiative of tmf dialogue.

Travelling today means to reduce negative impact as much as possible and to take responsibility for the destination. Our collaborative business model integrates all stakeholders to jointly follow the sustainable goals of the UN Agenda. We support building legacy projects (environmental and societal) and creating new programs. Follow us on LinkedIn:

Thanks so much for your interest and support in showing the industry that we can be part of the solution rather than part of the problem.

Johanna Fischer for ecomice explorers initiative at IMEX 22