NS29 Session 7

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: Influence of Equipment and Technology on Outdoor Pursuits

Organiser: Konstantin Gridnevskiy

Affiliation: NHL Stenden University of Applied Sciences



Traditionally, technology was believed to affect outdoor activities in such areas as access and transportation, comfort, communication, information, and safety (Ewert & Shultis, 1999; Goldenberg & Martin, 2008) and with the continuous developments that take place around us, this is probably not going to change. On the contrary, the dependence on the technology that people are developing in everyday lives is likely to influence them when they participate in the outdoor pursuits as well. And while in many cases, technological advancements can help people to go beyond their personal limits and open up new horizons (which leads to more inclusivity), an overreliance on such technologies and equipment might lead to incidents or even deaths. In addition, while social media could help less-known places to become more popular, it could also possibly bring mass tourism to vulnerable places or places that are not ready to accommodate a sudden increase in tourism numbers. As there is an increasing body of (circumstantial) evidence (e.g., selfies are said to kill more people then sharks; such deaths are labelled as selfiecide), more research related to this is needed.


As technologies change, our relationship with them changes in its turn as well. That is why, in order to prevent potential accidents and protect ‘untouched’ places, it would be important to monitor what exactly has influence on people’s behaviour and in what way. Therefore, this session is meant to be a place to discuss various aspects of the use of technology in the outdoors and what influence equipment and/or social media can have on participants in outdoor pursuits as well as on destinations.


Examples of possible topics could include:

  • New technologies and their influence on how people experience the outdoors (including risk perception)
  • Influences of social media on outdoor pursuits, destinations, choices of activities and behaviour of people who participate in them
  • Usage of everyday equipment (e.g., smart phones) in the outdoors
  • Assessments of technology-related accidents or issues and what could be done to prevent them in the future


Key words: adventure tourism, outdoors, technology, equipment, social media, risk perception, accident prevention, individual behaviour.