What do you get when Joe Kava, Chris Crosby and Rich Miller walk into a bar? Besides getting a wealth of knowledge about the industry, all I know is that you’re definitely at a data center event. The data center industry is a small one. The main players – likely including yourself – all know each other. As with most other industries, we have all the same stuff: our favorite publications, the “big guys” who dominate the market and the annual tradeshow and events circuit.
But whether you’re new to the industry, or you’ve been working in data centers since 1946 (ish 😊), you need to keep a calendar of the most popular and important data center events. Here’s a list of the top 10 events you may want to attend:
Top data center events
- 7x24 Exchange is one of the leading trade organizations for the data center industry and includes chapter organizations in states across the US. 7x24 Exchange International – the parent group – runs an annual event, typically in June, to bring together members and industry professionals working in the data center, IT and mission critical sectors.
- AFCOM is a professional organization, founded in 1980, to support the then, relatively young data center industry. Now with 40 chapters worldwide, AFCOM's member chapters host local networking events and it is a pillar company for one of the industry’s largest conferences: Data Center World.
- CAPRE stands for CapRate Events and runs a series of conferences throughout the year, focused on data centers – among other sectors – from a real estate sector point-of-view. Founded in 2011, the company covers industry news while managing their portfolio of events that take place across the country
- Critical Facilities Connect (formerly Critical Facilities Summit)
- Re-branded in 2020, the Critical Facilities Connect is a membership-based organization that holds the annual Summit as well as some workshop opportunities. Targeting data centers, as well as other critical facility environments, this show keeps its size intimate to examine the management of critical infrastructure.
- Datacenter Dynamics is a London-based organization that runs international data center events, including annual US East Coast (New York City) and West Coast (San Francisco) conferences. Targeting executives in the industry, Datacenter Dynamics also holds events around the globe, bringing all facets of data center management together.
- Data Center World is a marquis event for the data center industry and has brought leaders in both facilities and IT together for over 15 years. Now managed by InformaTech, Data Center World partners with AFCOM and typically leans more towards the facilities and operational tracks for data centers versus IT.
- DC/AC is a Texas-based, annual summit that tackles the convergence of tech and data centers to examine the impact of emerging technologies throughout the industry, including: AI, IoT, immersive gaming, VR/AR and wearables, among others.
- Although part of BisNow’s larger selection of business-oriented events, the DICE series focuses a couple of events a year on data center commercial real estate news and trends. Relatively new offerings, these events consider M&A activity, investment trends and the future of facility build-outs.
- Gartner is a large organization with multiple offerings, insights, reports and – of course – events to share their findings. The Gartner IT Infrastructure, Operations & Cloud Strategies Conference is an annual gathering of IT professionals interested in Gartner’s research-rooted content. This event attracts multiple job titles and leaders working in all factions of data centers.
- HCTS is hosted by 451 Research and focuses on research-based, state-of-the-industry conversations and the business angle for executives working in hosting, cloud, data center and managed services. Targeting the c-suite, it’s a high-level, intimate event that provides a snapshot of the state of the industry.
Although a telecom conference, PTC nevertheless attracts a good selection of the data center industry – about 15% of participants come from data centers - due to our parallel and shared interests. PTC stands for the Pacific Telecommunications Council and this non-profit, membership organization additionally holds community events in 40 nations, focused on the advancement of information and communication technologies.
Two of the newer events to the industry, both Edge shows are tackling questions around one of the hottest topics facing data centers: how to build and manage infrastructure at the edge to meet the need for ever-faster network speeds.
Originally published on March 9, 2020 | Last updated on 04/29/2020
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