This metropolitan can fly under the radar, but Hamburg remains a major transport hub and is one of the most affluent cities in Europe. Fast Company even honored the city as One of the Smartest Cities in Europe. Hamburg also was awarded the European Green Capital designation in 2011, and consistently ranks globally as one of the top liveable cities. At 157 hectares, HafenCity (Harbor City) is Europe’s largest urban regeneration project. When completed in 2025, this roughly $ 14 billion project will house a university, a port, and lots of mixed-use residential and commercial development connected with excellent, green transit. All of this makes us excited for what Hamburg can bring to Social Media Week for their third year.
To get you prepared, we talked with Sabine Ewald, Senior Project Manager of hi-life. hi-life (Agentur für Veranstaltungen Uriz von Oertzen) is a event agency, based in Hamburg and Berlin. For almost 20 years hi-life has created new formats and hosted events for customers from the media and entertainment branch and classic industries.
- What makes Hamburg a great city for Social Media Week?
Hamburg has a tradition of commerce and trading. Digital and social Media are embraced not only by start-ups but also in the classical industries, media and publishing sector. Last and defintely not least, Hamburg loves to network and party – Social Media Week Hamburg combines quality sessions with networking & music. hi-life is at home in Hamburg and has a great network of brands and partners. This network was invited to develop Social Media Week Hamburg with us. Obviously, almost 20 years of experience in event production and music shows have helped a lot to start SMW in Hamburg.
- What is the most exciting and unique aspect that you see coming to SMW in Hamburg?
Of course we have amazing keynotes: Maude Standish/ Misstress Creative, Peter Rampling/ Telefonica Digital and Anita Zielina/ Stern.de to name only three. Another aim is to practically use social media to make things happen and to get people involved: www.nexteuropeancity.net is a platform asking people how technology can better urban life, a cooperation for SMWHH 2014. ‘SMW Social Travel for Charity’ is another project we started and are inviting the whole global SMW community to take part.
- What one event should people not miss out on?
As we work with companies and brands as much as with young professionals and start-ups, we see a crucial interest in the focus ‘Career & Recruiting’ — the future of work and the role jobs play in our live are central in one way or another to everyone. Therefore, I would like to highlight the ‘Karriere-Hafen’ a job fair initiated by hi-life that will take part during SMWHH. There SMW attendees can meet our partners and other interesting brands, live and personally.
- How will SMW in your city stand out from other conferences?
SMWHH stands out due to its structure: Being organised decentrally in different hubs, taking a whole week time to discuss and network, being organised as a network-conference by the hosts, the advisory board and event partners. We aim at standing out in quality as well, inviting inspiring personalities and presenting fresh ideas and high-potential projects.
- This isn’t your first time hosting SMW. How will SMW14 be bigger and better this year?
SMWHH is greatly supported in Hamburg, not only by partners and sponsors, but also by location partners, media partners, the SMWHH advisory board and volunteers. SMW14 might be the best SMWHH so far because its’ network is growing and very active.