The issue of sustainability has always played a major role at DTHG, both in ecological and social terms. As early as 2002, for example, we recommended the use of FSC-certified wood. Since then, the DTHG board team, led by Wesko Rohde, has regularly been part of symposia, given talks on topics such as holistic construction and renovation, and repeatedly issued statements on ventilation and water spray extinguishing systems in theaters. We regularly publish innovative master's theses that address the specific requirements of the industry, produce guides (e.g. Construction and renovation of cultural buildings) and provide impetus to cultural policy. Since we at the DTHG always want to provide our members with practical tips, we have summarized here which measures we have already developed and implemented internally. If you have any other practical solutions on the subject of sustainability, please feel free to write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We welcome any input!
The international trade fair with congress will take place again in Berlin in 2023 after a long break. In planning and realizing the event, we paid attention to criteria of ecological as well as social sustainability from the very beginning. Due to the funding of the SHOWTECH Congress by the Berlin Senate Department for Economic Affairs, Energy and Industry and the co-financing by funds from the European Union, we paid particular attention to sustainability here and implemented the following measures:
The planning of our event was based on the guidelines for the sustainable organization of events from the by the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety and the German Federal Environmental Agency.
The STATION is located in the heart of Berlin, a few hundred meters from Potsdamer Platz, making it perfectly accessible by train and public transport, even internationally. All requirements for the event organization are available locally.
Stand Construction & Signage
For smaller companies and institutions that cannot realize their own stand construction, we offer our DTHG stands. This modular stand construction was designed by Michael Haufe, the well-known stage designer who has been creating dream worlds for theater productions, shows, musicals and museums in his own studio and workshops in Epfenbach and Waibstadt for 30 years. The stands are made entirely of wood and have been used for our trade fairs for over ten 10 years. Since 2022, we also no longer use trade fair carpeting, which causes a lot of hazardous waste, but the ecological alternative PAPRFLOOR. This material comes from 100 percent waste paper. After our trade show, the PAPRFLOOR flooring is recycled and made into cardboard. All signage, banners, posters, etc. that we have printed ourselves are printed in a climate-friendly way by renowned companies such as Gerriets or the Umweltdruckerei.
Equipment & Technology
The equipment for our congress is provided by our long-standing and close partner LICHTblick Bühnentechnik GmbHwhich is located in Brandenburg, a few meters beyond the city limits of Berlin. There we store our trade fair paraphernalia, which we reuse every year. As a presentation and display area or as a co-working station, we use a modular table that was carpentered from the old stage floor of the Deutsche Oper after it was no longer usable due to a sprinkler system accident on site. The table has high and low elements so that it can be used as a standing table as well as for wheelchair users. We rent additional equipment such as furniture and decoration from Expofairalso located in Berlin. For the transport in both cases no stretch film is used. Company LICHTblick Bühnentechnik is also responsible for the technology. For the event-related lighting, only LED technology is used.
Communications, Marketing, Procurement
Our communications and design team works exclusively with digital tools. Invitations, information, newsletters, etc. are provided to exhibitors, speakers and guests purely digitally. In terms of advertising in advance, we also rely on digital formats such as social media, website and newsletter advertising. Print advertising is only booked on a case-by-case basis. Participant management (invitation, confirmation, instructions, invoicing, on-site registration) is implemented entirely digitally. For on-site routing, careful decisions will be made about any need for print (see above). Print materials that cannot be avoided are printed at the environmental printer or local suppliers. We refrain from using give-aways, with the exception of a carrier bag made of Fairtrade cotton. The print motif was kept neutral so that the bag can still be handed out at future events. By popular demand, we will also offer a printed program brochure again, after we had dispensed with it at BTT2022 and provided the program overview digitally via QR code. A leaflet helps most visitors to find their way around on site and serves as a quick way to find information. Here, the benefits of printing were carefully weighed. Participants, service providers as well as the public are actively informed about the sustainable planning approach and measures in advance and also on site.
We would like our visitors to travel in a climate-friendly way by Deutsche Bahn. STATION-Berlin is located in the center of Berlin and is also easily accessible internationally thanks to its proximity to Potsdamer Platz. For this reason, we have created a DB event ticket for our exhibitors and guests, with which travel to Berlin can be booked at very low cost. All exhibitors, speakers and other partners will be made aware of the DB event ticket offer. The DTHG team will also be traveling by train.
Staff & Accommodation
Most of the helpers at SHOWTECH live in Berlin and do not have a long journey. All other people from the team, exhibitors, speakers and moderators will be accommodated for the most part in the MotelOne, which will be One Planet.One Future which has developed its own sustainability program based on the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). All hotel rooms reserved by us are within a maximum radius of 1.6 km from the venue and within walking distance (100 m to max. 350 m) of public transport.
Catering at SHOWTECH will be provided by a local supplier and will include many vegetarian and vegan options. The catering at the congress will be purely vegetarian-vegan. This will also exclusively use food that comes from organic farming in accordance with Council Regulation (EC) No. 834/2007 of June 28, 2007 on organic production and labeling of organic products. At least 60% (of the monetary input of goods) of the foodstuffs used, in relation to the total input of goods, originate from seasonal regional production and regional processing. A regional service company is contracted to calculate the amount of food according to demand in order to avoid food waste. Only reusable tableware, cutlery and packaging will be used. The SHOWTECH Night trade fair party will be held at the BRLO opposite the trade fair location. The BRLO brewery is housed in 38 converted overseas containers and is Germany's first plant-based brewery restaurant, featuring regional and high-quality meats on the side. It has won awards for both its architecture and gastronomic concept. BRWHOUSE has been listed in Gault & Millau since 2018.
Waste separation is naturally difficult to control at large events. The DTHG team and all service providers will be actively reminded of the need to maintain waste separation throughout the event, both during set-up and dismantling and during the event itself. We will also label the waste containers well during the event so that foreign guests in particular can find their way around the German separation system.
The topic of sustainability is inherent in the programme of SHOWTECH. Our exhibiting specialist companies have often been involved in technical innovation and ecologically valuable solutions for many years. In our congress program, sustainability will be the main topic on the main stage on the second and longer day. We will discuss the topic with international experts in a European context, using the example of the Theatre Green Book and the use of digital technologies for construction rehearsals and occupational safety at the theater.
In addition to the obligatory facilities such as parking spaces in front of the door, ramps and wheelchair-accessible WCs, we offer simultaneous interpreters for German and English for the congress program and additionally sign language interpreters for the German-language part of the program. Further and detailed information about the accessibility of SHOWTECH can be found here.
The SHOWTECH Congress and the subsequent get-together are sponsored by the Senate Department for Economics, Energy and Operations.
The SHOWTECH congress and the subsequent get-together are co-financed by funds from the European Union with the participation of the European Regional Development Fund.
Even before the coronavirus pandemic, the entire DTHG team mainly worked from a home office. In this way, we save a lot of CO2 by not having to travel, and our employees with children in particular can structure their workday flexibly. Nevertheless, we have a small office in Cologne and one in Berlin where colleagues can meet so that the social aspect of working together is not lost.
The vast majority of necessary business trips are made by Deutsche Bahn. At the beginning of their employment, employees receive a Bahncard 50, which they may also use privately. We also offer job tickets in Cologne and Berlin. Accommodation is either private or - if possible - in one of our "MotelOne" partner hotels. MotelOne is committed to many areas of sustainability and regularly participates in campaigns such as Veganuary. We think that's great!
All employees are provided with mobile work equipment when they are hired. This means that everyone can decide where he or she wants to work. We always use the equipment that is already available. New equipment is only purchased if the technology really no longer works. We use equipment of high quality and long durability.
We work predominantly digitally. Paper printouts are rarely necessary for us. Our entire accounting department has been working paperless since 2018.
In the area of marketing, too, we try to work as resource-efficiently as possible. Where possible, we work with digital advertising or electronic information media. If prints are necessary, we choose as a service provider the environmental printing house that works with certified papers and inks. If the desired offer is not available there, we choose a corresponding environmentally friendly variant in another printing house. We print short runs locally in a copy store. In this way, we avoid delivery trips.
In our offices our employees can buy fairly produced coffee from nurucoffee as well as oat milk are available free of charge to our employees in our offices, and we also make sure that mainly vegetarian and vegan meals are available at team meetings.
Smaller meetings of individual teams take place approximately every two months. Large team meetings with all colleagues take place two to three times a year. Here we mainly talk about future projects and define the contributions of the individual teams. In this way, it becomes clear from the very beginning how the tasks of all the teams intertwine. This strengthens our sense of togetherness, which we also show to the outside world.
Exchange and networking
In addition to our internal meetings, we also offer our members, cultural actors, technology producers and other interested parties nationwide analog and digital platforms for exchange and networking. In our events such as the regional group meetings, the network meetings and of course our annual fairs and workshops, best practice examples can be presented and current issues around theater and technology can be discussed. The DTHG recently established its own sustainability working group, which, among other things, is developing a guideline for climate-friendly productions for cultural institutions.
The DTHG has always supported people in gaining qualifications. We offer our employees not only topic-specific training, but also coaching. For our members and other interested parties, in fall 2021 we launched our continuing education program Education Stage a real milestone for us! Here we offer impulse lectures, seminars, workshops and expert consultations on various topics in the field of theater and technology. Whether it's virtual reality, occupational safety or advice on funding applications, we provide cultural professionals with a wealth of knowledge for their day-to-day work. The impulses are free of charge and the seminars very affordable, so that our offer is also very accessible to trainees and students, for example. Since we have an international network, we also offer English-language programs.
Virtual technologies at the theater
One focus of our continuing education program is on the use of immersive technologies at the theater. For example, stage sets can first be planned digitally with the virtual construction sample - and changed as often as desired. These technologies contribute immensely to conserving resources (materials, time, money) and saving CO2.
In addition to sharing knowledge in our regional group meetings, publishing innovative master's theses that address the specific needs of the industry, we regularly produce our own guides for our target group (e.g. Construction and renovation of cultural buildings or the guide to pandemic-compatible ventilation). Since fall 2019, our digital.DTHG team has been working on virtual solutions for work processes in cultural production; in 2020 and 2021, we served as the funds-issuing agency for the two NEUSTART KULTUR subprograms Pandemic-related investments and Maintaining and strengthening the infrastructure for culture in Germany - live cultural events - spoken word, vaudeville and cabaret.. Both funding programs support theaters and agencies hit by the pandemic in their re-entry with broad-based expertise and sustainable solutions of both a technical and content-related nature. At the end of 2020, we launched our project for Ventilation Certification and at the end of 2021, we were able to rebuild our Educational Stage where several educational formats on various topics (including immersive technologies, funding advice, occupational safety) will take place every week. With the planning for the 61ST BTT 2022 and the expansion of offerings for the educational stage, a project group was formed at the beginning of 2022 to address the question of how cultural institutions, and theaters in particular, can work sustainably in order to not only make a non-material contribution to environmental protection, but also actively support the climate goals of the German government.
Sustainability Working Group
Our current climate protection law formulates the goal that Germany will be climate-neutral from 2045. So sooner rather than later, the cultural and creative industries will also be affected by targets. There are already many great initiatives, but many people are still at a loss as to how best to tackle the issue. For this reason, a sustainability working group has been formed within the DTHG team to discuss possible and realistic measures in regular meetings with interested parties from various cultural institutions in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. The team is in contact and close exchange with other networks, such as the Bühnenverein, the Bund der Szenografen, the OETHG and others.
Theatre Green Book
While looking into sustainability measures for the cultural sector, the DTHG's AG team came across the Theatre Green Book came to the attention of the AG team. The handbook, developed in England by Paddy Dillon and other partners, shows in a very practical way which measures can be implemented in the various organizational areas. The first book deals with sustainable production, the second book covers measures for buildings, and the third book shows approaches in operations, such as office, rehearsals, travel, and catering. The books are rounded out by tool kits such as checklists for everyday use. Enthused by these books, the DTHG quickly contacted the authors and suggested a German translation. Thus in a short time a new DTHG project was born. We have not only translated the existing three books including toolkits, but also adapted the contents for the German-speaking market and supplemented them with German best-practice examples. As a bonus, we are planning a fourth book dealing with social sustainability. To use the Theatre Green Book, the DTHG team received training from Paddy Dillon with the goal of offering the same training for German user:ing. The first workshops took place in early 2022 and we are gradually expanding our offering in this area.