TT 5



Press Release


The effects of the recent Indian Ocean Tsunami on populations in eleven countries have emphasized, among many other things, the importance of tourism to their economic well-being. Tourism generates income, creates and sustains jobs, facilitates trade opportunities, friendships, mutual understanding, and is a potential tool for peace. Perhaps more than any other industry, tourism is vulnerable to unforseen events whether natural (such as SARS and tsunamis), or human made (such as terrorism or war). Destination managers and politicians see the need to incorporate crisis management planning into their sustainable development and marketing strategies. They recognize the need to rebuild an image of safety and attractiveness, to reassure potential visitors of their safety, and to aid local travel and tourism industry members in their economic recovery.

The BEST Education Network (BESTEN) announces Think Tank V to meet in Kingston, Jamaica from June 16-19, 2005 at the University of West Indies. This year’s conference theme addresses Managing Risk and Crisis for Sustainable Tourism and includes research paper presentations, keynote addresses by international experts, a research agenda forum, and curriculum design for sustainable tourism and hospitality. Issues to be addressed will include: Disaster Reaction Strategies; Planning for Disasters; Risk Management in Tourism; Disaster Scenarios in Tourism and their Mitigation; Tourism in Fragile and Sensitive Areas; Risk Assessment in Tourism; Conceptual Contributions to Sustainable Tourism and Risk Management; Case Studies; and De-marketing.

BESTEN Chair, Pauline Sheldon commented “We chose this critical topic for our fifth Think Tank months before the recent disaster. Even then, we felt it was important to address the needs of destinations in their preparation for, planning of, and recovery from crises and disasters. Now more than ever experts and educators must come together to address this knowledge gap.” Scholars, practitioners, civil society and agency representatives are invited to submit either full papers or abstracts for possible presentation at the conference. The deadline for submission of full papers is February 15 and for abstracts for work-in-progress research is March 15th, 2005. The Call for Papers and Registration Information can be found on the BEST Education Network web site: