NS29 Session 20

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: Towards smarter and more sustainable coastal tourism

Organisers: Arja Lemmetyinen and Tuomas Pohjola

Affiliation: University of Turku (main organizer) and University of Kragujevac (partnering)



In the era of increasing global sustainability challenges, smart actions are called for to promote sustainable blue tourism (coastal, maritime and other water-related tourism). Sensitive water areas are at the forefront of facing the global challenges related to sustainability and the growth of tourism. Any maritime or land-based activity deteriorating the environment can negatively affect tourism. Moreover, in the context of the Covid-19 pandemic and heading to the post-pandemic era, the sustainability debate could be a vital instrument to enhance the competitiveness of coastal tourism.

The wide-ranging digital revolution has led to the emergence of the concept of smart destinations in which knowledge and information are accessible to all stakeholders, facilitating them to carry out continuous innovation of activities and co-creation of tourism experiences. Along with the rapid expansion of disruptive technologies and the wide use of ICT, another main driving force of smart tourism is appropriate governance that promotes sustainable development, the triple-bottom-line and conservation as central strategic aims. Furthermore, regional smart specialisation (S3) strategies often encourage the deployment of sustainable blue tourism as a means to advance socially, environmentally and economically balanced regional development. Cruise tourism is a topical example of blue tourism where smart solutions, sustainability challenges, and regional development effects are at focus. Within the ecosystem of actors, all suppliers and intermediaries, the public sector, as well as consumers and various interested parties are networked and dynamically co-produce value for everybody interconnected.

In the call for this special session we welcome not only academic papers but also case or project presentations representing different disciplines (business-managerial, socio-psychological, macroeconomic, political/governance, future studies to name few) in order to get a wide insight on the actors and action required to get into the trail towards smarter and more sustainable blue tourism.