International Symposium on Destination Stewardship Inspires the Future of Global Tourism
Canada’s Minister of Tourism, The Honourable Soraya Martinez Ferrada, officially opened Destination Canada’s International Symposium on Destination Stewardship during a reception at the Canadian Museum of History in Gatineau, Québec.
The Symposium, which ran from November 7–8, aims to challenge participants to forge a new path towards a more inclusive, resilient and prosperous tourism sector. Leveraging and learning from previous and existing initiatives, the Symposium explored how a regenerative approach to tourism can have a positive impact on residents, their communities, the economy, culture, and the environment.
Latest research from over 15,000 Canadians found that 82% of residents agree that tourism is a positive force in Canada. However, despite its many benefits, it’s clear that the current model of tourism must change. Across the globe, there is an increasing demand for tourism to place communities and the environment at the forefront. The sector can no longer gauge its success solely by metrics like volume and revenue.
In an ever-evolving global landscape, events like the Symposium provide a crucial touchpoint to understand the dynamics of how the future could emerge, learn from other industries and leaders to support long-term industry growth and resilience.
“The Symposium comes at a pivotal moment in the evolution of global tourism,” said Marsha Walden, President and CEO of Destination Canada. “We’re welcoming experts and thought leaders who share our commitment to pursue a regenerative approach that can fully support people, place and prosperity. Working together, I am confident we can solidify Canada’s global reputation as a progressive, innovative leader in destination development, while also realizing our ambition to generate wealth and wellbeing for all of Canada and enrich the lives of our guests.”
This experiential event has attracted global thought leaders, partners, and knowledge holders from diverse sectors to speak on topics such as tourism as a force for good, climate change, innovative community engagement, and the preservation of cultural and natural heritage.
“Tourism is a force for good in communities across Canada – but we must ensure that it’s a sustainable one,” said the Hon. Soraya Martinez Ferrada, Minister of Tourism. “We know that potential visitors around the world are increasingly thinking of sustainability when deciding where to travel, and we need to be ready. By bringing together tourism leaders to focus on this important topic, this Symposium helps Canadian tourism chart a course for a more sustainable future.”
Pico lyer, Travel Writer and Author of The Half Known Life: In Search of Paradise, will speak about his life of exploration and finding peace while travelling.
David Allison, Founder of The Valuegraphics, will explore the shared human values that connect people.
Christopher Gaffney, Clinical Associate Professor in the Tisch Center for Hospitality in the School of Professional Studies, will present on Regenerative Tourism Design.
Jacquelyn Omotalade, National Director, Climate Investments, Dream.Org, will address the tourism in the time of climate crisis.
Jorick Beijer, Urbanist and Director of Blossity, will explore how international cities can create better spaces for interaction and collaboration.