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 June 02, 2013
Adelaide Convention Bureau and Sahmri Alliance Bringing Benefits To South Australia

 The Adelaide Convention Bureau and the South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute (SAHMRI) have forged a relationship that is delivering results well before the world-class $200 million health and medical research institute officially opens its doors later this year.

Just announced is the successful bid by the Adelaide Convention Bureau in conjunction with SA Cancer Service's Professor Dorothy Keefe and the Convention Centre to host the 2016 International Symposium on Supportive Care in Cancer -- an event worth $5.7 m for South Australia.

Some 1,500 of the world's top supportive care researchers and practitioners, along with patients and advocates are expected to attend the four-day symposium providing an excellent opportunity to create networks and connections between the international and local cancer health and research community.

The Adelaide Convention Bureau has long focused on medicine and science as two highly attractive genres to seek out and pitch Adelaide as a host city for both national and international conferences.

Damien Kitto, CEO Adelaide Convention Bureau said, "We recently formed a 'science alliance' with three other destinations -- Hyderabad in India, Daejeon in South Korea and Toulouse in France. This alliance, whilst in early stages, will see the four cities working to assist each other with bid submissions and lead opportunities with respect to international science-based conferences.

"SAHMRI adds an entirely new level to the benefits of hosting health and medical science events in Adelaide. The advantages to our local researchers by hosting the events, where the focus of the world within their particular scientific genre is set firmly on Adelaide, is invaluable," he said.

SAHMRI's Executive Director, Professor Steve Wesselingh, has graciously accepted an ambassadorial role within the Adelaide Convention Bureau's Conventions Adelaide programme -- a programme where high-calibre personnel within a particular field are invited to join and work together with the Bureau to identify opportunities and prepare bid submissions with the aim of hosting future conferences in Adelaide.

"It is incredibly important to the future of this state's research and science capabilities that we continue to host and attract national and international conferences to Adelaide. The spotlight on our people, our facilities, our collaborations and the work we are doing here in South Australia is priceless. This is the legacy that we want to leave for generations to come," said Professor Wesselingh.

In consultation with SAHMRI, the Adelaide Convention Bureau and Adelaide Convention Centre has recently worked to identify and bid for major conferences linked to SAHMRI's seven research themes, including: Aboriginal Health; Cancer; Nutrition and Metabolism; Infection and Immunity; Healthy Mothers, Babies and Children; Heart Health; Mind and Brain.

To this end, there is already $62 million in economic benefit to SA of confirmed convention business that has a link to one of the medical areas linked to SAHMRI, coming to Adelaide within the next three years. In addition, a further $91 million worth of business is currently in the development pipeline.

"The collaboration between SAHMRI and the Convention Bureau is vital for this state on so many levels," said Damien Kitto. "Our return on investment to industry is one of the highest in Australia at 50:1. The additional opportunities that will be available to us in the future are fantastic and limited only by resources," he said.

"The Riverbank Precinct with SAHMRI, the new Royal Adelaide Hospital and the redeveloped Adelaide Convention Centre, will showcase South Australia's finest talent and our international visitors will have the opportunity to tour our exciting new facilities."


As a new entity, SAHMRI will significantly increase Australia's capacity for leading scientific research by building a team of more than 600 top researchers in a world-class precinct of medical research and clinical application, state-of-the-art laboratories, and a purpose-built, iconic, 25,000 square-metre facility adjacent to the site of the new Royal Adelaide Hospital (NRAH).

Works on site of the flagship facility commenced in February 2010 and are anticipated to be completed in late 2013. The unique co-location of research and hospital services will create synergies between researchers and clinicians, integrate health and medical research into clinical practice, and help attract and retain key researchers and scientists to South Australia.

SAHMRI's research will focus on seven key areas that are of critical importance to the health and wellbeing of our community:

• Aboriginal Health
• Cancer
• Healthy Mothers, Babies and Children
• Heart Health
• Infection and Immunity
• Mind and Brain
• Nutrition and Metabolism