The International Marcé Society for Perinatal Mental Health is a global non-profit organization with a mission to promote, facilitate and communicate the latest research on the mental health of women, their infants and partners around the time of childbirth. The primary outreach vehicle for this organization is Marcé’s biennial conference, typically held in the home country of the president of the Society (who serves a two-year term and simultaneously acts as the conference chair). For the 2018 conference, President Jane Fisher had a new vision: to hold the conference in a lower-middle income country of the Global South, where there is great need for services, as well as ground-breaking research and effective practice around the care of women with perinatal mental health issues. Led by Professor Fisher, Board Members and Conference Co-Convener Prabha Chandra, Marcé committed to hosting the 2018 Biennial Conference at the National Institute for Mental Health and Neurosciences (NIMHANS) in Bengaluru (formerly Bangalore), India.
In order to support this initiative, Parthenon Management Group partnered with an Indian conference organizer, Marundeshwara Enterprises, to share duties and create a seamless experience for our delegates. The American association management company handled the registration of International delegates, while the Indian association management company was responsible for the registration for Indian delegates. This division of labor resulted in significant cost savings for the society, as banking service charges and international transfers were minimized. Parthenon was able to draw upon processes and traditions established for previous international conferences, while Marundeshwara provided expertise and hands-on customer service to create the optimum experience for our conference delegates. Attendance, profitability, and most importantly, satisfaction with the conference far exceeded our estimates. Participants described the conference as ‘transformative’, and ‘pivotal’ in its goal of bringing people from the Global North and the Global South together for effective Global Dialogues. The partnership between American and local association management companies can be the perfect solution for creating a successful international conference.