Mar 25 ICGC Brown Bag: Voc educ & training for tourism jobs: A force for global change?

ICGC Brown Bag Series

Friday March 25th, 2016


537 Heller Hall

Vocational education and training for tourism jobs: A force for global change?

Presented by: Dr. Kenneth Bartlett, Department of Organizational Leadership, Policy and Development

Abstract: The World Bank has declared tourism as one of the few industries that can push a significant number of developing nations to higher levels of prosperity.  Tourism is reported as the principal export in 83% of global south countries.  Further, tourism is noted as one of the world’s top employment creators, with one in eleven jobs globally in this sector.  Consequently, most developing countries now direct significant attention toward vocational education and training for tourism related employment.  Tourism training institutions are found in most developing countries, often reliant on some form of international agency technical and financial assistance for establishment. However, there is significant concern that tourism has not delivered its expected benefits.  Research continues to show a range negative social, economic, cultural, and environmental impacts of tourism.  The reappraisal of tourism requires examination of issues such as the hegemony of the market, commodification of ‘otherness’, post-colonialism, and the institutionalization of the privileged positionality of dominant Western systems over indigenous and local epistemologies.  While the complexity of tourism in an open-access world is acknowledged, the approaches and problems of workforce education and training for tourism employment are rarely considered.  This presentation will summarize several of my recent research studies, experiences from international technical assistance projects, and personal impressions from site visits to tourism dependent regions in developing nations and the global south to examine critical issues related to vocational education and training for tourism jobs. 
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