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Sustainable Tourism: Capacity Building & Educational Needs Dr. Acolla Lewis-Cameron University of the West Indies, St. Augustine, Trinidad.

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Presentation on theme: "Sustainable Tourism: Capacity Building & Educational Needs Dr. Acolla Lewis-Cameron University of the West Indies, St. Augustine, Trinidad."— Presentation transcript:

1 Sustainable Tourism: Capacity Building & Educational Needs Dr. Acolla Lewis-Cameron University of the West Indies, St. Augustine, Trinidad

2 Outline Analyse the unique context of SIS Examine the role of education in achieving sustainable tourism development Explore specific tourism educational needs Recommend ways in which tourism education can contribute to sustainable tourism development in SIS

3 SIS- A Unique Contet The tourism industry in many SIS is the mainstay of the local economies with a significant degree of foreign ownership The small scale of an islands physical resources cause it to be far more susceptible to the negative effects of mass development and greatly increased usage which tourism brings

4 Economic Dependence Tourism is often times the only or one of (2) activities that sustains these economies The share of tourism in GDP ranges from a 1/3 to ½ for most islands It is the main generator of employment for the region – (1) in every (4) jobs

5 Foreign Dominance Capitalisation of government incentives by transnationals – tax-free concessions Loss of control over local resources Lack of planning Excessive foreign exchange leakages Poor linkages in the local economies

6 Fragile Natural Environment Waste water discharge from hotels & cruise ships Destruction of coral reefs e.g. Cayman Islands Construction of tourist facilities in environmentally sensitive areas e.g. Maracas Beach, Montego Bay Airport Beach erosion; dumping of waste Impact of climate change & natural disasters e.g. hurricanes

7 The Sustainability Challenge Creating & maintaining a sustainable tourism society is a major challenge for SIS in the face of Overdependence on tourism Negative effects of climate change Depletion of natural resources

8 Sustainable Tourism Tourism which is developed & maintained in an area (community, environment) in such a manner & at such a scale that it remains viable over an indefinite period & does not degrade or alter the environment (human & physical) in which it exists to such a degree that it prohibits the successful development & well being of other activities & processes (Butler, 1993:29)

9 Tradeoffs among the Three Main objectives of Sustainable Development Preservation of the Environment Economic Efficiency Social Equity

10 Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) ESD involves approaches to teaching and learning that integrate goals for conservation, social justice, appropriate development and democracy into a vision and mission of personal and social change for sustainability It challenges the way people think about the world, the way they live in it and relate with each other. (UNESCO, 2010)

11 ESD- Key Principles Enable students to link issues of tourism and sustainability to their own lives/actions Create learning spaces/opportunities within tourism activities to explore or deepen understanding of sustainability Facilitate students to uncover and reflect on their assumptions, values and beliefs or worldviews through tourism activities and discuss how sustainable these are.

12 Tourism Educational Needs- The SIS Context Shift from problem identification to problem resolution More holistic view of the tourism industry Broader influence on curriculum space- greater stakeholder input Need for a participatory, interactive, integrative, reflective, analytical, as well as value-driven approach to tourism education

13 Tourism Curriculum: A Contested Space Vocational Tourism Education tourism is viewed as a phenomenon that should be organised and managed in such a way that it brings profit to tourism businesses and satisfaction to the paying tourist. narrow concentration on consumers and producers is to produce graduates who can be readily recruited to the labour market, and who can make a positive contribution to profitability or other aims of tourism organisations

14 Tourism Curriculum: A Contested Space Liberal Tourism Education provides students with a holistic understanding of tourism as a phenomenon and not simply as an industry it encourages students to adopt a critical perspective on the tourism knowledge gained students are encouraged to consider alternative tourism scenarios such as tourism and the environment, tourism and politics that focus on the wider issues in the society

15 Curriculum Space & its Influences- need for broader stakeholder input

16 Education and Sustainable Tourism Integrated Tourism Education Incorporating Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) principles into tourism education curriculum Experiential learning- hands on participatory activities Live projects Community programmes

17 Education and Sustainable Tourism Internships Establishing internships within the industry that serve as a knowledge transfer partnership where students are able to use their knowledge/expertise at the organization to help achieve their goals or moreover the goals of the industry. In the UK there is an established programme called Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTP) The partnership involves one or more recently qualified persons (Associates) to facilitate this transfer of skills and expertise. The Associate works full-time within the company on a project central to their needs and is jointly supervised by company personnel and a senior academic.

18 Education and Sustainable Tourism Developing research councils Research councils are statutory bodies that advise the government on current research being undertaken in different academic fields and how it contributes to policy development. The Australian Research Council works with the mission to deliver policy and programs that advance Australian research and innovation globally and benefit the community. It has been successful in developing partnership projects between industry and higher education to foster international competitiveness in the industry.

19 Education and Sustainable Tourism Research centres as part of universities Within many universities there are research centres that unite academics in related fields to conduct continuous research in their particular area of study. According to the University of Surrey one of the many schools with a formidable research centre Research Centres strengthen and reinforce areas of existing research excellence within the School; whilst bringing together researchers from across the School who are currently working in different disciplines, subject groups or who are external to the School.

20 Education and Sustainable Tourism Research units in ministries Having direct access to research allows ministries to obtain the needed information to guide policy development by meeting the needs of the ministries with respect to specific areas of research. In turn they can partner with universities to use graduate students to carry out research topics/themes generated from these units.

21 Education and Sustainable Tourism Establishment of an e-Lounge An environment for the meeting of the minds; exchange of ideas; dissemination of research; updates on cutting innovations; facilitation of surveys for new products; expert advice.

22 Conclusion


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