A creative Lab for policy makers and practitioners at the time of Covid-19
The project is developed by the OECD Trento Centre for Local Development and tsm – Trentino School of Management, in collaboration with the OECD Tourism Committee
The Covid-19 pandemic has heavily affected tourism worldwide and it is expected to continue doing so over the coming months. In such a changing context, there is a widespread acknowledgement that tourism will never be the same in the Covid-19 aftermath. The effects of the pandemic will modify the way we move, the way we stay, and the way we experience destinations.
This massive change will not be linear and destinations around the world will face unprecedented challenges. Hence, the demand for new skills, new tools and new strategic approaches will increase. The recovery of tourism requires conceiving innovative ideas and views, considering all phases of the customer journey.
The recovery will require a long time and, now more than ever, there is the need of a transition toward a more sustainable tourism. The sustainability concept should be intended in a broader perspective, and the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development should be regarded as the reference guideline for such transformation. This will be particularly important when it comes to the future of tourism in natural areas as the protection of nature will be particularly important after the pandemic.Why a focus on natural areas, and why now?
Based on various analyses of Covid-19 impacts on tourism, it is fair to assume that nature will be explored more in the post-Covid-19 era. Free spaces, remoteness, air purity, water freshness will gain more value in the eyes of travellers, and Protected Areas might expect a significant rise in the number of visitors, particularly by domestic tourists. This will have advantages but also side effects and will require more responsible management of negative impacts to find new solutions, to build a more sustainable tourism in Natural Areas, and to improve resilience to future shocks and instabilities. Transforming the crisis into an opportunity depends as well on the capacity of the policymakers and operators to gain a deep understanding of the situation and to shift toward new models and settings.
The theme of the Future of Tourism in Natural Areas project (Tour.Nat) is tourism management in natural and protected areas: how to design it, how to make it more balanced, how to reshape the experiences, how to govern and manage the visitors’ flows, how to minimise the negative impacts, how to manage the relationship with local communities, how to engage with nature stakeholders, and how to govern it for the benefit of the local people and the natural environment.
Goal & Topics
The project intends to build an agile living laboratory of practical seminars, individual research, working groups, creative sessions, interactive discussions, and online tutoring. Bearing in mind that no “one-size-fits-all” solutions for the current and post-Covid-19 challenges exist, the steering concept of Tour.Nat is to leverage on the case studies and on the participants’ first hand experiences. The ideas and actions of the post-pandemic tourism – that participants have been developing and are going to test during the summer – will be discussed, studied, analysedand compared to draw practical lessons and viable solutions for the forthcoming seasons.
In dealing with the twofold practice-oriented and policy-making challenge, Tour.Nat builds around three main topics: impacts, governance and financing.
The Project, capitalising on the 2019 OECD-tsm project on Tourism management for UNESCO designated sites in Natural Areas (T.UN.NA), is conceived on a full web-based peer-to-peer training and capacity-building concept and is built on 3 main components:
The international seminar (3 July 2020) is open to everyone interested in Tour.Nat topics.
The Community Lab (15 Oct – 26 Nov 2020) targets are:
- Practitioners (local and regional Destination Management Organisations, tourism business operators, tourism agencies, experts, representatives of sectoral interest groups and associations, researchers);
- Policy makers (local, regional and national authorities, national and regional agencies, international tourism sector organisations, tourism management institutions and bodies);
- Parks and natural areas’ managing authorities and natural areas regulating institutions.
Registration link: https://www.oecd.org/cfe/leed/tournat.htm
Source, and further information: OECD https://www.oecd.org/cfe/leed/tournat.htm