One key contributing factor to Singapore’s robust MICE industry is the work of top professionals in key industries who advocate Singapore as a host destination for conferences and events to their professional networks abroad. Grouped as the Conference Ambassadors Programme under the Singapore Tourism Board (STB), these professionals help by drawing on their sterling reputations and extensive networks of contacts in various international organisations to spearhead efforts to champion Singapore’s viability as a host venue.

The world congresses of the IUMS occur every three years and compose three major co-located events: the International Congress of Bacteriology and Applied Microbiology, the International Congress of Mycology and the International Congresses of Virology. These three combined together bring the best, largest and most comprehensive researchers and experts in microbiology. These conferences promote sharing, cooperation and discussions on the most recent advances in microbiological research. They’re also a good opportunity for those in the different fields of microbiology to network and mingle.

Professor Lee says that organising this conference is not just borne out of a vision, “but a mission and a sense of responsibility. Although I’m a Singaporean, I realise there are many places I have never been to until I organise conferences. And so why not share those with others? You make a lot of lifelong friends and even working partners,” he says in an interview with TTGassociations. For Professor Lee, conferences inspire new ideas and inspirations. “It’s when someone inspires you to think: Why has this not been done before? Why can’t I do it?” he says in the interview. Sharing information and adding to what we know is even more important for Singapore because the country is so small and professionals need to be exposed to colleagues from other countries for knowledge sharing.