Joint urban tourism and sustainable travel events, CityDNA Autumn Conference & GDS-Forum, to be held in Bruges in 2024

City Destinations Alliance and the Global Destination Sustainability Movement announced that their two back-to-back events in Urban Tourism and Sustainable Travel, CityDNA Autumn Conference & GDS-Forum will be hosted in Bruges on October 15-19, 2024.

For the second time, the CityDNA Autumn Conference will be linked to the GDS-Forum.

  • The GDS-Forum, on October 15-16, 2024, will convene destination leaders and sustainability champions from around the world. This is a dynamic and unconventional gathering to discuss sustainability and impact strategies and best practices, learn from GDS-Index journeys, and co-create new approaches and initiatives for greater regenerative destination management. It will follow a non-conference format with a focus on peer-to-peer learning, collaboration, and creativity.
  • The GDS-Awards Ceremony, on October 16, 2024, will bring both communities together in an entertaining and inspiring, evening-time celebration to recognise the winners of the 9th GDS-Index Awards. The larger platform enables greater reach and recognition for and aspiration around destinations whose sustainability contributions have now exceeded pre-pandemic levels in a global industry with a growing responsibility to “be the change we need to see in the world”.
  • The CityDNA Autumn Conference, on October 16-19, 2024, will provide destination professionals working for Tourist Boards, CVBs & DMOs with a unique occasion to meet and network with colleagues from Europe and beyond, while learning and sharing knowledge and insights on the latest trends and challenges or urban tourism in Europe. The CityDNA conference will showcase a diverse range of collaborative sessions, inspiring discussions, and innovative approaches.

Former CityDNA Board Member and Visit Bruges Tourism Manager-Director, Dieter Dewulf said, “There are places that somehow manage to get under your skin. And this certainly applies to Bruges: a cosmopolitan and charming city that welcomes visitors from all over the world. As a dedicated member of the CityDNA community since 2006, we are honoured that the next “GDS-Forum & CityDNA Autumn Conference” will take place in Bruges and we are very much looking forward to welcoming our colleagues in the unique setting of our World Heritage City!”

“I am thrilled to share the news that Bruges will be the host city for the second GDS-Forum, brought to you by Global Destination Sustainability Movement (GDS-Movement) and City Destinations Alliance. We are committed to empowering the mindful advancement and stewardship of travel destinations. Our goal is to safeguard ecosystem health, foster social inclusivity, cherish cultural heritage, and uphold economic sustainability. As such, we are privileged to take our next steps in Bruges,” added Guy Bigwood, CEO and Chief Changemaker from the GDS-Movement.

Petra Stušek, City Destinations Alliance’s President concluded: “We are really glad to announce that the CityDNA Autumn Conference & GDS-Forum 2024 will be held in Bruges. With a rich history and a commitment to sustainability, Bruges sets the perfect stage for discussions on the future of tourism. The city’s ambition to be climate neutral by 2050 aligns seamlessly with our focus on ‘better’ rather than ‘more’ tourism. We anticipate a conference that will not only explore industry trends but also fosters connections in the warm and hospitable setting of Bruges!”

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About City Destinations Alliance
We are a knowledge sharing network for cities and urban regions working to unfold the potential of the visitor economy. Our vision is for all cities in Europe to flourish as great places to live, work, meet and explore. As a community of professionals, our promise to each other is to always be curious and forward thinking, share our inspiration and never stop learning.

For more information and pictures, please contact:
Bénédicte Lack,, +33 380 56 02 03