The first meeting of the Krakow Network as of the moment when the Krakow5020 company became the operator of the project was held on 20 September in the ICE Krakow Congress Centre. Representatives of the tourist, event, catering and hotel industries present at the meeting could hear about ideas for the future and new projects.

The first one to speak was Izabela Błaszczyk, the President of Krakow5020. ‘Our slogan is: Krakow. Here you are. It means that Krakow is a place worth living, worth investing in, worth working in, worth learning about. We very much look forward to working together with you for its development.’

Paula Fanderowska, the Vice-President of Krakow5020, talked about the goal of the company, which is to develop the image of Krakow on the basis of the cooperation and partnership networks. ‘It is difficult to imagine a tool that would be better for this purpose than Krakow Network. It is the tool that allowed us to survive the difficult time of the pandemic, thanks to which we completed very important projects such as the Krakow Network Protocol and the Sustainable development policy of the ICE Krakow Congress Centre. It is also an image and promotion tool because today, destinations compete by showing their networking and their partnerships. It is also a tool that will allow us to face new challenges such as sustainable development. It is also an executive tool for implementing a sustainable tourism policy.

As Vice-President Fanderowska stressed, Krakow Network remains within its structures. It is based on groups led by Julien Hallier and Basia Wityńska-Słącz (Krakow Future Lab), Krzysztof Paradowski and Anna Leszczyńska (event sector), Magdalena Młynarczyk and Kasia Chmura (hotel sector), Marcin Cieślikowski and Anna Wodziańska (gastronomy), Agnieszka Faracik and Jarek Kruk (DMC), Anna Jędrocha and Małgorzata Przygórska-Skowron (PCO), Marta Szkudlarek and Monika Frenkiel (PR). A new academic group with Miłosz Stanisławski and Tomasz Wojtas as leaders is also emerging to show off Krakow as an attractive place for studying, to facilitate the transfer of business to science and make the start of young people in business easier. The mode of operation is changing: instead of group meetings, we focus on cross-group work and on group work in thematic threads. From now on, Krakow Network meetings will also be held in different places to promote one another and learn about the opportunities. The e-mail address of the Krakow Network has also changed:

Thanks to the Krakow Convention Bureau, it became possible to include Krakow in the Global Destination Sustainability Index. Krakow appears there next to cities such as Helsinki, Glasgow and Copenhagen. We consider it a great challenge. It means that we will get guidelines on how to follow the path of sustainable development’, Paula Fanderowska said. The criteria included in the index largely overlap with the activities of Krakow5020 and the Krakow Network.

Weronika Wirtel, the Marketing Director in Krakow5020, presented benefits of the participation in the project to new members of the Krakow Network: the cooperation with other entities from the MICE sector on preferential terms, good corporate PR, business promotion among members of the Krakow Network and interested parties, participation in the creation of a coherent, effective promotional message of the Krakow MICE sector, participation in CSR actions in cooperation with members of the Krakow Network, an opportunity to acquire knowledge and expand business opportunities, promoting the development of business tourism in Krakow and in the Małopolska region, which will help build a competitive edge in our region. She also presented a spot of the Krakow. Meet the Innovation campaign that promotes Krakow as a city of innovations.

New hospitality is one of the slogans of Krakow5020. What new hospitality is and how to build it will be discussed at the strategic workshop organised for members of the Krakow Network on 27 September. Another meeting for all members of the initiative will be held on 13 December 2022 in the ICE Krakow Congress Centre.