NS29 Session 1

29th Nordic Symposium on Tourism and Hospitality Research
Shaping mobile futures: Challenges and possibilities in precarious times

21-23 September 2021



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Title: Re-creating destinations as storyscapes 

Organisers: Laila Gibson, Lotta Braunerhielm & Linda Ryan Bengtsson

Affiliation: Karlstad University



In this session, we discuss how visitors can be transformed from gazing tourists to respectful travelers. This is an important piece of the puzzle if we want tourism to contribute to social sustainability. To achieve this, places and their history, culture and social life might need a more justly representation, in digital media as well as through the experiences offered on site. There is a need for a more reflective perspective of how places and people are represented in marketing and during the visit. By re-discovering their local past and re- create their destinations into so called storyscapes, local stakeholders could become tomorrow’s ‘stakemakers’. This means telling old stories in a new way but also let new stories come to life.


We argue that this transformation of both visitors and stakeholders is crucial in trying to increase the awareness and knowledge of cultural and natural resources. With more knowledge and awareness comes an understanding and care for destinations as communities. This transformation also requires different methods and tools based on interaction. Creating storyscapes involves collaboration between different people, memories and competences, in time and space. By including local residents as well as tourism businesses in these processes, can we strengthen their local identity rather than threaten their social life?


We invite researchers to this session to discuss some of the following topics:

  • Socially sustainable tourism practices
  • Responsible local destination development
  • Digital representation of places
  • Storytelling methods and best practices
  • Collaborative methods for destination development and innovation