Civic Tourism Civic Tourism - The Poetry & Politics of Place Now Available! Civic Tourism: The Poetry & Politics of Place By Dan Shilling, Foreword by Scott Russell Sanders
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Mission: Reframe Tourism



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The March 2006 conference brought together some of the nation's finest researchers and practitioners who endorse a place-based approach to tourism and economic development. While the gathering was referred to as a "conference," it was really designed as a series of salons, during which participants could dig deeply into the idea of "using" tourism to preserve and enhance place, in addition to strengthening the economy.

The Civic Tourism conference sought to identify appropriate and feasible ways to combine:

  • theory and practice
  • resident and visitor perceptions of "place"
  • sustainability and economic development
  • tourism development and community building

For more information about the conference's background and goals, check these two introductory sections from the printed program: Welcome, Goals (pdf files, may take a minute)

Presenters were divided into four content areas:

  • Sense of Place: This category included researchers who focus on the subject of "place," conceptually and historically. One conference goal was to link theories of place to responsible tourism practices.

  • Tourism Management: This group featured practitioners of existing programs that incorporate concepts central to Civic Tourism, such as "using" tourism as a tool for building healthy communities.

  • Tourism Trends: This category included theorists breaking new ground in place-based tourism and economic development - suggesting methods and outcomes that are outside the usual approaches.

  • Public Voice: Civic Tourism's central premise is that we need a new kind of public converation about tourism, not the usual pro/con debate (pro: tourism provides jobs; con: tourism ruins towns). This unit included presenters who reviewed strategies for civic engagement within a tourism context.


Now Available! Civic Tourism: The Poetry & Politics of Place By Dan Shilling, Foreword by Scott Russell Sanders

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August 2010 Conference

Civic Tourism III

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Civic Tourism II

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Click here to watch Arizona Governor Janet Napolitano's welcome to the first Civic Tourism conference.