Welcome to the City Nation Place Advisory Group – a network of leading decision makers from place brand, economic development, and destination marketing organisations from around the world. We’re working with these industry leaders to identify the emerging challenges and opportunities that should be top of the agenda for place professionals. The quarterly discussions from our Advisory Group are already sparking action, with new work streams launched to help our members address their top concerns and projects in the works to share those learnings with the broader industry.

Benchmarking approaches to research

Developing a toolkit for stakeholder engagement

Learning from marketing experts

City Nation Place are launching a research report to understand what best practice looks like when it comes to researching and evaluating the impact of place brand and marketing strategies. We will be conducting interviews with a mix of place leaders from around the world representing best practice in this area to create a report, which will then be further backed up by a qualitative survey to benchmark these best practices against the wider industry.Drawing from City Nation Place expertise and our archive of insight and awards, we will be curating initiatives and approaches that different places are using to engage their core stakeholders in their vision for the place. This toolkit for stakeholder engagement will provide actionable ideas to inspire your next strategies to drive engagementAs we prepare for future meetings with our Marketing Working Group, we are reaching out to representatives from social media platforms and big tech, as well as digital futurists who can help our Marketing group better understand how they can increase their presence or visibility on specific channels or to prepare for new and emerging trends.

Here are just a few of the trailblazing place leaders sharing their insight with us as part of our advisory group...

How you can get involved

The Advisory Group is made up of place branding leaders from around the world, and as we finish our first year, there are limited places to join – although we hope to extend the programme to more participants in coming years. However, if you would like to be involved, or if you would like to be featured in either the Research report or the Stakeholder engagement, please do get in touch by emailing We’d love to learn more about your work.


City Nation Place Champions

This work would not be possible without the financial support of our City Nation Place Champions: Brand Tasmania; Destination Cleveland, NZ Story, VisitPITTSBURGH and Wesgro:

City Nation Place represents a unique and important confluence of place making, perception, and economic development. We are happy to support the Champions program as it helps ensure important conversations and insights on these topics with a global perspective that helps our organization strategize its future.

David Gilbert, CEO of Destination Cleveland

This is a new way of thinking about economic, social, and cultural development. Yet it has a massive impact on the people who live in our cities, regions, and nations. There isn’t a playbook that works for everyone, so it’s crucial to share our successes and failures. This is deeply meaningful work we are all lucky enough to do. It’s also strange, and no one understand like others who do it. Ultimately, the best reason to connect with peers is to help the people we serve more cleverly and powerfully.

Todd Babiak, CEO of Brand Tasmania

I hope we can accelerate our collective impact – learning what others are doing will allow us to transfer that to our own context, or learn from their experiences. As we are forming the international group, we are also redefining the craft of place branding. While we may be separated by time and distance, often our challenges and opportunities are similar. I’ve learnt much already from how others are handling some of the same specific issues we face, in a unique field. Place branding is very much a niche, and we are all still collectively learning how best to have impact. The diversity of thought and experience allows us all to improve and grow.

David Downs, CEO from NZ Story

City Nation Place provides opportunities to engage with the global tourism and economic development community in meaningful ways. Through CNP, we have connected with a large network of practitioners who are doing amazing work in all corners of the world. Learning from each other through the exchange of ideas is a great way to create opportunities in our home markets.

Jerad Bachar, President & CEO of VisitPITTSBURGH

Never before have we seen such a rapid change in how destinations are positioning themselves locally and internationally. This is because of the advancements in technology and channel innovation as well as the changing mindsets of audiences, and the need to respond to increasing complexities and crisis. City Nation Place provides the platform for leaders and change-makers in destination marketing to continue important conversations around implementing marketing mix strategies as a result of analysis, segmentation, changing travel, buying and investing behaviours and motivations. Insights are invaluable as we determine as a collective how we can be more effective for our respective regions.

Jean Scheltema, Chief Marketing & Innovation Officer at Wesgro

We look forward to continuing to connect with our City Nation Place Advisory Group and Champions over the coming months and creating new resources to support the development of place branding as an industry. Watch this space for more news.