Event recap by Alexandra Darras and the IABC event committee at Leeds University.
“Maurice Keyworth is filling up! About to start!”. 22nd of March 2017, 6.20 pm, the social media team is calling out for latecomers as the conference will begin shortly. “Thinking Big Data” came up as the completion of three months months of work from the organising team.
The “Thinking Big Data” adventure began in December, when the Corporate Communication Marketing and Public Relations (CCMPR) students have been invited to volunteer to carry on the alliance between Leeds University Business School and the IABC UK, and organise a networking event involving both parties for the second consecutive year.
Nineteen students have been involved in the organisation, all split up into different poles to ensure every aspect of the event was covered. Nonetheless, even though each had a specific task to focus on, everybody have taken part in the discussions and decisions for each step of the organisation process.
The team has come across a fierce debate about the theme of the event. Many ideas were raised, such as crisis communication, or how to communicate CSR effectively. All of the members have passionately defended their favorite topic, and big data eventually emerged as the winner. Once the theme set up, Daniel Schraibman – Board Director of IABC UK – has kindly gone through his extensive IABC network to invite speakers who would be able to deliver compelling and complementary talks revolving around Big Data.
The event has been advertised on Facebook and Twitter as they seem to be privileged platforms used by the university to communicate with students – and also allow to share all sorts of content, from short reminders about the night to longer posts describing the programme for instance.
On the D-Day, the whole team was present and made a wonderful job ensuring the smooth progress of the event. The festivities kicked off at 6pm with a cup of tea and biscuits, as a welcome to all the guests, and an opportunity for the speakers to meet and have a friendly chat before the start of the conference.
Moving on to the speeches then, Matthew Nowell, Paul Brennan, Janet Morgan and Stuart McRae gave excellent talks, each of them considering big data under a different angle – based on their own experiences- giving the audience complementary insights about this vast topic. Attendees’ feedback was very positive, all the guests that have been interviewed afterwards turned out being extremely satisfied with the content of the conference, and the speakers’ obvious professionalism, knowledge, and pedagogy.
A lively discussion ensued as speakers interacted during each other’s talks, when their field of expertise overlapped.
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View the presentations below: