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Pacific Tourism Organisation to Launch Inaugural Pacific Islands Tourism Research Symposium

The inaugural Pacific Islands Tourism Research Symposium (PITRS) will be launched tomorrow by the Pacific Tourism Organisation (SPTO) in partnership with the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs (NZMFAT), University of the South Pacific (USP), Massey University and partners.

The PITRS recognizes the importance of Tourism as a key economic driver for Island states and also responds to the need for access to critical research information to guide countries towards tourism reactivation during what remains to be a very challenging and uncertain time for the Pacific Tourism industry.

The Symposium will include a wide range of partners and stakeholders including leaders in the area of tourism research and statistics, researchers, practitioners from the public and private sector, development partners, civil society, marketing agencies, data and statistics practitioners, regional and international organisations. It will provide a platform for these tourism stakeholders to discuss the state of play, challenges and opportunities and design the way forward for improving regional coordination in tourism research.

Held virtually over two days from 30th November to 1st December, the PITRS will comprise of four sessions as follows:

Tuesday, 30th November 2021:

 Session 1 State of Play – Tourism Research Overview: provides an overview of tourism research initiatives at global, regional and national level

Session 2 State of Play- Key Tourism Research Initiatives: provides an overview of the existing initiatives and research activities in the Pacific region

Wednesday, 1st November 2021:

Session 3 Tourism Sector Research Needs & Barriers: discusses research needs and barriers faced by countries, industry and partners in developing tourism in the Pacific.

Session 4 Roadmap for Tourism Research Partnerships: defines the roadmap for Tourism Research Partnerships in the Pacific through the identification of stakeholder roles and responsibilities and seeking reflections on the cooperation framework to guide future tourism research partnerships.

Whilst briefing media ahead of tomorrow’s launch, SPTO CEO Mr. Christopher Cocker noted the importance of the event in light of the current situation in the Pacific.

“As countries begin to consider and work towards Tourism reactivation, SPTO together with USP, Massey University, NZMFAT and other key partners recognised the need for a symposium to motivate and achieve greater coordination of effort and understanding of research activity and information available to guide future tourism planning, decision making and direction, post COVID 19”, he said.

“We are extremely thankful to NZMFAT and Massey University for their support of this event, as well as the PITRS Steering Committee led by Dr. Api Movono (Massey University) and Professor. Stephen Pratt (USP), all of whom have been extremely supportive of SPTO and Pacific Tourism as a whole”.

The preliminary programme for the event is accessible here

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