Behind the scenes at the Mediterranean Economic Week


Marseille and the Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur region form a key hub for Euro-Mediterranean partnerships due to their geographic location, history, port facilities, business networks and the close links they have

Elsa Larue de Tournemine, head of communications at the OCEMO, looks back on the preparation and behind-the-scenes organisation of the Mediterranean Economic Week held at Marseille’s Villa Méditerranée from the 2nd - 4th of November 2016.

What was involved in the run-up to this event?

We start organising the Mediterranean Economic Week at the beginning of the year. We decide on the theme in liaison with financial backers during steering committee meetings. Once the theme has been set, we start to put together different topics that we can develop in order to approach the issue. Then we issue a call for projects so that any institution from our local area or the Mediterranean regions wishing to organise an event or present ideas linked to the theme can come and participate. Then we look at all the responses and evaluate them in the steering committee, in order to start building an event program that responds to the issues and the objectives we set each year for the Mediterranean Economic Week.

How are the conference organisers and participants selected?

We select organisations by sending out a consultation assessment. During the consultation period we have a grading chart and we pick the projects that best meet the evaluation criteria and the specifications we sent out beforeh and. Each event organiser is then free to manage the set up of their own workshop of speakers and participants. They are independent, but registration is carried out via the central website, which is shared by all events and keeps a record of all participants.

The OCEMO is also a content provider for the event, as the Office organises the introductory session, the press conference and, in certain years, event workshops too. Via its role as event coordinator, the OCEMO is also proactive in providing support for certain event organisers in terms of content and speaker preparation. Finally, the OCEMO provides financing, along with the sponsors, for a significant part of the cost of MEW.

How is the MEW theme chosen?

The theme is chosen with regard to its importance for the economic development of the Mediterranean region and current events. Financial backers agree upon a theme with high potential that can combine a number of relevant projects and that is central to the centres of interests of as many organisations as possible. The chosen theme must encourage discussion for an exchange ofskills and projects, as well as sharing of experience and best practices with the potential to increase ambition in the sector or area in question. The aim is to gather ideas for the future and drive forward ways of thinking about the topic at h and.

What goes on behind the scenes during the event?

During the event, from an organisational point of view we try to make sure that everything is going well and to respond to the needs of the organisers and any other requests we might receive. But we also have to ensure communication is effective throughout the event. That’s why we publish meeting summaries and manage press activity with interview requests, and the team generally monitors the entire event.

After three days of the 2016 event, Else Larue de Tournemine gave a very positive report in terms of feedback from companies and organisers, as well as the various operators who attended the event. One representative from Skillendo, an education and e-learning advice body having organised a workshop at this year’s MEW, made contact with Elsa Larue de Tournemine stating: “I wanted to really congratulate you on your organisation. We’ve made some great contacts. We wanted to work on our br and image and we want to thank you for choosing us as conference participant. We were really happy to be a part of the event. It’s been a real honour to be present at Mediterranean Economic Week. “

Mediterranean Economic Week is a highly promising event for the region, encouraging a multitude of exchanges and assisting participants make new contacts for economic development in and around the Mediterranean regions.