The mission of the Association is to enhance the international recognition, visibility and development of the Place Branding and Place Marketing disciplines among the expert, professional and academic community as well as among the different institutions and public and private organizations involved directly or indirectly in the branding and marketing of places (cities, regions, countries, destinations) by ensuring professional standards in the profession through:

_The member community professional development and networking.
_Debate and Knowledge creation, sharing and dissemination.


The Association’s vision is to be the global network of reference in a highly professionalised and respected discipline of research and practice in Place Branding. It is recognised as such among the place branding & marketing expert, professional and academic community, and among all organizations and people involved or interested in the branding and marketing of places (cities, regions, nations and destinations).

The goal of IPBA is to create a network platform, where relationships among the expert, professional and academic community can be developed and where knowledge and information in the place branding and marketing field can be found, created, shared and disseminated.


Robert Govers

Dr. Robert Govers Chairman

is an independent international adviser, scholar, speaker and author on the reputation of cities, regions and countries. Since 2009 Robert Govers has co-edited and authored four books, including Imaginative Communities, on the topic of community reputation. He has also co-authored over 50 journal articles, book chapters and conference papers and has delivered numerous public speeches and business publications. In addition, he is co-editor of the quarterly journal, Place Branding and Public Diplomacy. He has also been an adjunct or visiting scholar at Tsinghua University, Beijing; the Indian School of Business, Hyderabad; the University of Leuven, Belgium; Rotterdam School of Management, the Netherlands; Loughborough University London Campus; IULM University Milano, Italy; and several institutes in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. He also teaches place branding on the UNESCO World Heritage at Work Master's programme in Torino, Italy.
Robert has held positions in South Africa, the Netherlands, Belgium and Dubai, United Arab Emirates. He has been involved in many consultancy projects and advisory boards for reputable organisations such as the International Air Transport Association, the European Commission, the Flemish government and various ministries, tourism promotion boards, and regional and city administrations.

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Martin Boisen

Martin Boisen Vice-Chairman

is a geographer who specializes in the marketing and branding of cities and regions as an integral part of urban and regional governance and planning. Martin is the owner of the advisory firm For the Love of Place and co-founding Board Member of The International Place Branding Association. He lives in The Netherlands, from where he has been involved in more than 100 advisory projects. His clients include cities like The Hague, Oslo, York and Ghent, and regions like Amsterdam Metropolitan Region, Provincie of Northern Brabant, the Veluwe and the Wadden Sea area. Martin also contributes as a panel expert to The Place Brand Observer, he’s a chief advisor to European Cities Marketing and has been involved in knowledge-development through UrbAct, Interreg and UNWTO. Next to his advisory work, Martin is a lecturer in Human Geography & Planning at the University of Groningen. He's published a number of influential research articles and book chapters on the topic, is a frequent keynote speaker at international events and a celebrated guest lecturer at several institutions around the world.

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Magdalena Florek

Dr. Magdalena Florek Member of the Board

is Associate Professor at the Poznan University of Economics and Business in Poland. She is co-founder and Member of the Board of Best Place – the European Place Marketing Institute as well as Senior Fellow at the Institute of Place Management in UK. In 2006/2007 she was a senior lecturer at the Marketing Department, University of Otago in New Zealand. Magdalena is also scholarship holder of the Fulbright Program at Northwestern University and the Kellogg School of Management in USA. She is a member of the Editorial Boards of Place Branding and Public Diplomacy, Journal of Destination Marketing and Management, Journal of Urban Regeneration & Renewal, and Tourism and Hospitality Management. Consultant in brand strategy, city and region promotion. Magdalena is co-author of brand strategies and other related projects for Polish cities and regions. She is an active speaker and member of teams working on many international projects and grants.

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Hong Fan

Prof. Hong Fan Member of the Board

is professor of Global Communication in School of Journalism and professor of Corporate Communication for the Executive MBA Programs in School of Economics and Management, Tsinghua University, Beijing, China. She holds PhD on Language and Communication from University of Oxford, U.K. She is the founder and director of the Centre for National Image Research of Tsinghua University, a university-level interdisciplinary centre with professors from public administration, business management, architecture, humanities studies, Journalism, communication, arts and design, aiming to build the national image of the country as well as the brands of cities and enterprises in China. In recent years, Hong has led a number of Chinese national projects such as the research project ‘The Chinese Cultural Identity and Nation Branding’ and the consultancy project ‘2019 Beijing World Horticulture Expo’. Professor Fan is also the founder and director of City Branding Studio of Tsinghua University, which is the first government thinktank on place branding and image building. Hong is editor-in-chief of the book series of National Image Studies, and has published five books over the past years, covering nation branding, cultural identity, city branding, corporate reputation, cultural heritage, architecture, design, and other related fields.

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Mihalis Kavaratzis

Dr. Mihalis Kavaratzis Member of the Board

is Associate Professor of Marketing at the School of Business, University of Leicester, UK. He holds a PhD on city marketing from the University of Groningen, Netherlands and has taught marketing and tourism related courses in Budapest, Hungary and Leicester. His research focuses on the theory and application of place marketing and place branding. His interests include tourism destination marketing and the study of destination images. Mihalis is also a Senior Fellow of the Institute of Place Management. He has published extensively in various academic journals and he is co-editor of ‘Inclusive Place Branding’ (with M. Giovanardi and M. Lichrou, 2017), ‘Rethinking Place Branding’ (with G. Warnaby and G.J. Ashworth, 2015) and ‘Towards Effective Place Brand Management’ (with G.J. Ashworth, 2010).

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Nigel Morgan

Prof. Nigel Morgan Member of the Board

is Head of Surrey University’s School of Hospitality and Tourism Management. He has senior management and governance experience on executive and advisory boards in universities, government agencies and charities, has held professorial titles in several universities, and has extensive experience in tourism, sport and leisure policy, strategy, development, marketing and in events and PR from his time in national agencies and local goverment. He has envisioned, established and led academic communities as a Head of School, Associate Dean, Head of Department, and Research Centre Director at Surrey, Swansea and Cardiff Metropolitan Universities. Nigel has spent 25 years promoting inclusive, creative and responsible tourism research, education and academic community engagement.
He has sought to ‘make’ as well as ‘mark’ differences through his research, teaching and advisory interventions, working at the intersections of transformative learning, evidencebased research and community activism. An economic and social historian by doctoral training, his research is encapsulated in three entwined strands: place marketing, power and identity; inequality and wellbeing; critical studies and gender. He is perhaps best known for co-founding the Critical Tourism Studies Network in 2005 and co-chairing it until 2015. He has led consultancy projects for clients in the UK, Europe, the US and Asia and his research has been funded by the ESRC, British Academy, Leverhulme Trust, the EU and the Norwegian Research Council.

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Fields of activity.

  • Member community professional development and networking:
    _Sharing of experiences and resources such as white papers, case studies, ideas, tools through the website, etc.
    _Bringing the members virtually and physically together at a large event such as an international conference and also through smaller and more focused events on specific themes or in specific parts of the world.
  • Teaching/Training for the own member community, local, regional or national authorities and agencies as well as universities.
  • The Association coordinates research or advisory activities through its members and other partners/ institutions/individuals. Activities are based on open calls.
  • In partnership with a local host the Association organises the annual international event Place Branding Conference, consolidating past international place branding and marketing conference initiatives into one annual global summit on Place Branding (and Marketing) from 2016 onwards. This is done in partnership with the institutions and individuals that were involved in initiatives in the past, recognising their pioneering work.