The 2017 North American Golf Innovation Symposium will be held March 6-7 in Vancouver, British Columbia, gathering leaders in sustainable facility management and sports research to share knowledge and advance the game.
Symposium attendees will discuss how research, science and data can help golf facilities around the world reduce their costs, operate more efficiently and provide a better experience for golfers. Over two days, the USGA and other contributing innovators will share details of their ongoing work in areas such as resource management, golf operations, facility metrics, pace of play and equipment standards.
“Golf facilities have reduced water consumption, solved problems that cause bottlenecks on the golf course, and introduced programs to welcome more people into our game – simply by learning and sharing best practices discussed at these forums,” said Mike Davis, executive director/CEO of the USGA. “It’s a significant priority for the USGA to bring these leaders together each year, and foster this kind of innovative thinking.”
The 2017 event will be the fourth symposium hosted by the USGA, and the first conducted outside the United States. The first two events focused on pace of play and were held at USGA headquarters in Far Hills, N.J. In January 2016, the symposium in Pasadena, Calif., added content on other aspects of facility management and golfer experience. Presentations from previous symposiums, delivered by the LPGA Tour, American Society of Golf Course Architects (ASGCA) and USGA, among others, can be found by clicking here.
The 2017 event, supported by Golf Canada and the Mexican Golf Federation, will center on three major themes: Golfer Experience, Facility Sustainability and Innovation in Governance. The USGA will introduce technologies and tools, in addition to presenting research results from the USGA’s strategic partnership with the University of Minnesota. One of the partnership’s first studies measures the impact of green speed on pace of play.
Other planned topics include facility benchmarking, insights from the USGA-ASGCA Site Evaluation Program, and ideas for improving the golfer experience, such as flexible course routing and Tee It Forward guidance. Presenters will represent academia, the private sector, non-endemic golf industries and golf associations.
“The challenges facing golf courses transcend borders,” said Scott Simmons, CEO of Golf Canada. “Like other organizations around the world, we are trying to help our golf community, and we are excited to bring the Golf Innovation Symposium to Canada so we can provide an opportunity for our facility managers to benefit from the knowledge that will be shared.”
Additional details will be made available in the coming months.
The 2017 Golf Innovation Symposium reflects the latest effort by the USGA to serve the game of golf as a knowledge center and information-exchange platform for golf facility operators and owners, and to spark and share innovative thinking for a healthy future for the game.