Dutch as Dutch can.
Citizens identifying with a Summit
Influential world leaders and thousands of delegation members convened at the city’s World Forum to attend the Nuclear Security Summit (NSS 2014) this March. The Hague, ranging in size behind Amsterdam and Rotterdam, is the official seat of the Crown and the government, recognised international city of peace and justice, home to hundreds of international organisations and multinationals and one of the world’s top three UN cities. The Hague’s Peace Palace stands for international justice. The magnitude of decisions taken and judgements delivered there are of universal significance for humanity. By skillfully orchestrating the Nuclear Security Summit, the city lived up to the reputation it enjoys as a hospitable, well-organised and safe convention destination. Charmingly schmoozing his hosts prior to the event, NSS initiator US President Barack Obama exclaimed: “I love Holland!“
A textbook example of a private-public cooperation
And Holland loves Holland no less. Its tolerant, open-minded and multilingual citizens are aware of the privileges flushing along with winning prestigious major conferences and the warm limelight thus shed on their small country. So much so that for them it is a self-understood act to join in rather than to harbour a grudge against the commotion large-scale events inevitably impose on a city. A farsighted communication scheme implemented by the organisers saw to a continuous flow of information, so that perhaps even the reluctant were mollified. An imaginary „Red Carpet“ rolled out for conference participants far beyond the predestined convention area welcomed them in dressed-up streets. Museums opened their gates to delegates and the international press and entrepreneurs offered shopping discounts to ‘NSS Time Out’ or treated guests to drinks and music.
The battle against nuclear terrorism
Holland was selected the summit’s destination upon President Obama’s request, who is regarded a mastermind in the prevention of nuclear terrorism. With the port of Rotterdam and the international hub Amsterdam Airport Schiphol handling huge volumes of passengers and freight, the dangers of nuclear material being smuggled are omnipresent. Moreover, nuclear technology companies located in The Netherlands require close-meshed security measures. Within Holland, The Hague, symbolising peace, justice and security, became the obvious choice. Simultaneously to the NSS 2014, the G7 summit was hosted at the World Forum convention centre, a venue laid out for high-caliber gatherings. It is embedded in the The Hague Convention Dot, Holland’s largest convention facility. http://www.conventiondot.com
VIP treatment for smooth proceedings
Amsterdam Airport Schiphol had made available one of its runways to be used by delegations exclusively. Extra long trains ran and highways were cordoned off in order to ferry guests safely and smoothly to and from the World Forum. The world leaders were invited to the Royal Palace, Huis ten Bosch, to dine in the company of King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima.
Accolades for a flawless organisation
The NSS 2014 was the largest-scale summit ever held in The Netherlands. Its goal was to forge an international memorandum on global security issues relating to nuclear materials and nuclear terrorism. Delegations stayed at 55 hotels providing a total of 8,000 beds within a 60 kilometre radius of The Hague. The summit was concluded at The Hague’s Municipal Museum and brimming with the best urban and regional meeting expertise hospitality professionals have on offer. Their reward was a successful summit. The actual accolade for their efforts was conveyed by Barack Obama:
“Your hospitality was great, the organisation flawless and my visit was truly gezellig.“
All photos courtesy of ©World Forum, The Hague