Tourism and Leisure Studies Emerging Scholars Award

In early 2018, scrolling through an international tourism research and education network, I stumbled upon the final call for applications for an Emerging Scholar Award to attend the Third International Conference on Tourism & Leisure Studies. The awards are given to outstanding graduate students and emerging scholars who have a research interest in the conference themes.

The application process required me to concisely establish how my research linked to the key themes of the conference. The special focus for the 2018 conference is “building bridges to sustainability: tourism, culture, gastronomy and sport”, which fits and compliments the areas which I’m actively researching. Moreover, I was expected to demonstrate how I may contribute to the scope of the conference, and how I could effectively engage with emerging and established academics to develop interdisciplinary theory, practice and learning.

My background and experience in coordinating various events, presenting at recent conferences and symposium, and other professional work (e.g. teaching) suitably indicated the breadth of my key generic and technical skills. The closing date was looming so I tentatively submitted an awards application – not expecting to get a look in if I’m perfectly honest! I ruled myself out of the running and moved forward with my studies. Lo and behold a month or so later I was delighted to be notified by the organisers that I was going to be a recipient of one of the Emerging Scholar Awards.
Seeking out this route for attending international events is certainly not only beneficial for subsidising conference fees (I received a fee waiver!), coupled with enabling access to hard-to-reach locations, and enhancing wider engagement with the major players in your field or industry. Increasingly opportunities to attend through these means are scarce. As part of the programme, I will be chairing a number of themed panel sessions and presenting during the course of the conference.

This highly supportive environment is useful for professional and career development, building collaborations, and at the very least exploring a new place alongside interesting folk! In light of this award recognition, I envisage the platform as being instrumental in raising my profile and offering welcomed exposure to many of the leading lights and associated parties in the fields of tourism, events and leisure studies. So, next time you spot a similar opportunity, why not have a go and see where it takes you. What’s the worst that can happen?

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World Book Day: Environment and sustainability books

To celebrate World Book Day I have collated a directory of environmental and sustainability must reads! You can find the link to download the full listing at the bottom of this entry.

The directory rounds-up books from a range of genres and subjects, including climate change, environment, sustainability, activism, politics, economy and business. Seminal works are featured on this list, particularly from leading figures associated with the converging worlds of environmental justice, sustainability and climate activism, such as prominent advocates like Jonathon Porritt, Naomi Klein and Bill Mckibben.

You will be able to view the open access links to various author websites and/or publishers. This collection will be updated on a regular basis, perhaps quarterly based on new releases and feedback received. So feel free to suggest any additions!

Download and access the directory here.

Urban entrepreneurism and business competitiveness: the state of play for Rio de Janeiro post-Games

Last Tuesday, I presented at the 2nd International Workshop on Regeneration, Enterprise, Sport and Tourism (REST) at Liverpool John Moores University, UK.

If you’re interested in reading my conference abstract (on academia or ResearchGate) or would like to view my presentation (on SlideShare), you can find it in the links below:

academia

ResearchGate

SlideShare

Fostering small business socio-economic sustainability and legacies in the context of mega-events: A ‘Stakeholder Theory’ approach

On Thursday, I presented at the Mega Events: Fact or Fairy Tales Conference, Coventry University.

If you’re interested in reading my conference abstract (on academia or ResearchGate) or would like to view my presentation (on SlideShare), you can find it in the links below:

academia

ResearchGate

SlideShare

Environment and sustainability films and documentaries

In the run up to next week’s Sheffield Doc/Fest I have compiled a listing of environment and sustainability films and documentaries currently in circulation. You can find the link to download the full listing at the bottom of this entry.

This directory displays films from a range of subjects including climate change, environment, sustainability, activism, politics, economy and business. You will be able to view the open access links to various websites and/or trailers. This directory will be updated on a regular basis, perhaps quarterly based on new releases and feedback received. So feel free to suggest any additions!

There are notable works featured on this list such as An Inconvenient Truth (and sequel…), This Changes Everything and Before The Flood. If you are after a hard-hitting and pulsating documentary then why not check out the film, Unearthed. I was able to attend the international premiere at Sheffield Doc Fest some years back and reviewed the films impact on the global fracking industry.

Just a few words about yesterday’s events… We are in grave need of a step change to face up to the stark environmental challenges and realities we find ourselves locked in globally. This will help us to mitigate climatic pressures and counteract such disappointing news flowing in from the US on Thursday. But it’s not a catastrophe by any means, there are still many states signed up to the Paris accord. To ensure that the Paris agreement is stringently complied with what is now required is leadership from all parties to strengthen our negotiation powers and responsibility to the climate change cause. With this renewed hope we can look to create a liveable future for all citizens.

Download and access the directory here.

Tourism and Events 2017 Conferences

A number of months have seemingly passed since my last entry, so apologies for the lack of updates. After some very inspiring and immensely rewarding sessions at the 2nd @TouRNet_WRDTC PhD Symposium (more info here, highly recommended for those undertaking a PhD in the tourism/events/hospitality fields!), I thought I would provide you with a brief snapshot of my work in progress. This will focus on my conference abstract acceptances for the 2017 summer season. I will be speaking at the following conferences:

Social justice and social sustainability of mega-event host communities. Tourism Hospitality & Events: Border Crossings & Inter-Connections Research Symposium. 24 May 2017, University of Sunderland, UK.

Social justice of mega-event and tourism host communities with Michael B. Duignan. Critical Tourism Studies Conference VII. 25-29 June 2017, Palma de Mallorca, Spain. Follow their Facebook page for further details.

Social justice of mega-event and tourism host communities with Michael B. Duignan. International Conference on Tourism, Ethics and Global Citizenship: Connecting the Dots. 3-6 July 2017, Apeldoorn, the Netherlands. Search the Twitter hashtag #ctd2017 for key conference announcements and further details.

Advancing sport mega-event research – five critical themes. Association for Events Management Education (AEME) 14th Annual Conference. 5-7 July 2017, Cardiff Metropolitan University, UK. Search the Twitter hashtag #AEME2017 for key conference announcements and further details.

Each of the conference abstracts will be posted on my academic and research profiles, namely academia and ResearchGate later on in the summer. Additionally, the conference presentations will be added to my SlideShare account.

Shambala – Leading sustainability light on the UK festival circuit

With the UK festival season now in full swing I wanted to delve deeper and reflect on what really makes a festival sustainable.

With the UK festival season now in full swing I wanted to delve deeper and reflect on what really makes a festival sustainable. Using the example of Shambala Festival (25-28 August) I’m going to identify some key areas that require attention for festivals, in order to greater understand how other festivals can lower their impacts or even become carbon neutral.

In 2014, I produced a guide to the top sustainable festivals in the UK and a number of festivals including Shambala Festival were featured throughout. What makes Shambala so different is that it is committed to being as environmentally sustainable as it can. These key achievements really do portray it as an exemplar in its field, and how festivals should be run with regards to their impact on the local community and environment:

  • In the last five years they have reduced the onsite carbon footprint of the festival by 81%;
  • First festival in the UK to send zero waste to landfill;
  • In 2014 it was 100% powered by renewable energy;
  • Pioneered projects like the Bring a Bottle campaign and Travel Carbon Fund;
  • Founder member of the Green Festival Alliance and the Powerful Thinking initiative;
  • Co-founded a festival industry initiative – Energy Revolution, in order to grapple with audience travel. Audience travel is the biggest contributor to the festival’s carbon footprint;
  • In 2015 donations to their carbon fund raised over £4,000;
  • Their Bring a Bottle campaign resulted in 10,000 less plastic bottles on site and raised £5,000 for Frank Water projects in India;
  • Food waste leftovers from traders and campers amounted to 1.6 tonnes of usable food. This was distributed to local food banks with the help of Eighth Plate;
  • The festival recently achieved 4 stars for its Creative Green certification;
  • In 2016 Shambala will be completely meat and fish free on site.

It has won many other accolades, the list goes on! However there are of course areas for improvement such as recycling and other waste, as only 35% of waste was recycled – their target was 65%. They also did not meet their aim to get 15% of festival goers travelling on coaches, narrowly missing out with 14%.

Nonetheless, there is a recognition that the festival is taking an inspiring stance and vision to the way it powers the festival, sources local food and suppliers, promotes zero waste and contributes positively to the overall impact of the festival. Many other festivals could learn an enormous amount from its model, and could even look to adopt some of the practices it places at the very core of its operations.

Photo: Amelia’s Magazine via www.ameliasmagazine.com