International Journal of Business Events and Legacies (IJBEL) holds its sixth IJBEL STUDIO session

Miri – 5 August 2022 – The International Journal of Business Events and Legacies (IJBEL) recently held the sixth installment of its IJBEL STUDIO Series at Curtin University Malaysia (Curtin Malaysia).

IJBEL is Sarawak’s online platform for industry students, academics, researchers, practitioners and policymakers to understand the relationship between hosting business events and correlating activities such as management, economics and entrepreneurship among many other disciplines. Launched in March this year, it is jointly published by Business Events Sarawak (BESarawak) and Curtin Malaysia in collaboration with Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM) Sarawak, Sarawak Research Society and other partners. It is the world’s first online journal to merge business events and legacy topics.

The IJBEL STUDIO Series is a secondary platform aimed at presenting IJBEL in a studio setting to anyone interested or is actively involved in business events who would like to learn more about related issues such as marketing, tourism development, management, economics, entrepreneurship, hospitality and legacies, among others. In addition, the series provides participants with comprehensive guidelines for writing and submitting camera-ready papers to IJBEL for publication.

In this latest session, the panelists were Miri-based travel and event organisers Ian Kuek, Wilson Ho and Caroline Elizabeth Marsh, who shared some their best practices and strategies for revitalising Miri’s tourism and business events sectors in a post-COVID-19 environment. Moderating the session was Dr. Tiong Ying Ying, Managing Editor of IJBEL and Associate Dean of Research and Development of Curtin Malaysia’s Faculty of Business.

Kuek said that the tourism and business events sectors in Miri have been significantly impacted over the last two years due to the COVID-19 pandemic and much needs to be done to revive them.

He suggested that one strategy is for tourism businesses to diversify their services. He related how he has ventured into event planning and organising and is set on developing and staging more homegrown events like the Aurora Odyssey and Miri Street Auto Fest.

He also believes that the reopening of the Sarawak-Brunei border would augur well for Miri and result in an increase in tourism activities and business events over the next few months.

Ho, who is a graduate of Curtin Malaysia, remarked that not all tourism products and services were affected by the pandemic. He gave the example of how some hotels in Sarawak managed to sustain their business during the pandemic by turning all or parts of their premises into quarantine centres.

As an event planner, he aspires to help improve Miri’s positioning as a destination of choice by creating a better understanding of its culture, ethnicities and history amongst potential visitors. He said that in order to achieve this, the tourism and events industries need to adopt a very targeted approach with strong community backing.

Meanwhile, Caroline who is attached with CocoCabana at Marina ParkCity, commented that Miri has an astounding ethnic diversity and rich cultural heritage which should give it a competitive advantage when it comes to marketing Miri as a business event destination. However, this has not really been the case in the past and it will take a concerted effort by researchers, industry practitioners, government agencies and other stakeholders to make it happen.

All three panelists agreed that Miri can be a competitive business event destination and the important role of events in tourism destination development should be considered. They also urged more young people in Miri to in organising events and help raise Miri’s profile as a business event destination.

The next IJBEL STUDIO will bring together researchers at Curtin Malaysia, local business events stakeholders and researchers from Brunel University in the United Kingdom to discuss the post-COVID-19 business event landscape.

Contributions of research papers from the industry to IJBEL are highly valued. IJBEL publishes major papers, reports and reviews providing high-quality content that advances knowledge for researchers, practitioners, consumers and policymakers. The journal can be accessed at and enquiries can be directed to Managing Editor Dr. Tiong Ying Ying at or Editorial Secretary Dr. Fayrene Chieng at

For more information on Curtin Malaysia, visit its website at or look for Curtin Malaysia on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn or Tiktok. More information on courses at Curtin Malaysia can be found at

Moderator Dr Tiong Ying Ying (left) with panelists Caroline Elizabeth Marsh, Ian Kuek and Wilson Ho.