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Last year I was invited to participate in a Tourist Industry Council (TIC NSW) meeting. Its aim was to discuss a response to the New South Wales Government’s invitation for contributions to their new Visitor Economy Taskforce (VET). The taskforce was set up to identify ways to double visitor expenditure by 2020.
I used the meeting to emphasise how tourism can be used to identify and conserve local distinguishing features which then become the competitive points of difference.
The chairman of TIC and the CEO of regional NSW tourism both asked me to write outlining the points. The paper can be found here
A month later I was notified that I have been appointed to undertake a new product training programme for Central NSW Tourism, based on the recommendation of the CEO of regional NSW tourism. I was awarded the contract on the strategic thinking conveyed in the paper.
My observations from this are:
a) It is essential to be directly involved in industry peak bodies and be involved in policy making opportunities. This gives you both an opportunity to shape policy but also to influence others
b) Writing arguments which explain practically why RT is a better way forward allow others to reflect and comprehend the arguments. Not everyone has the same life experience; theories can be in conflict with people’s beliefs. It is necessary to prepare a logical form of argument to help persuade.
I also sent the paper to the VET committee. Some of their final recommendation mirror the overall concept explained in the paper. A little progress. More can be read here
The new product development project is underway. I am focusing on building tourism “from the bottom up” through training workshops, tourism trails and sustainable supply chain management. Incidentally we have now boosted the budget a little with the inclusion of an Environmental Trust grant to assist with the supply chain education. The idea of Local Distinctiveness as a tool to build more sustainable tourism is gaining momentum in this project.
You can observe progress from the ICRT – Australia site here Christopher Warren
International Centre for Responsible Tourism – Australia
Sharing Knowledge to create better Tourism