HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE 22ND INTER-UNIVERSITY SEMINAR ON SUSTAINABLE TOURISM
Shared value in tourism is about companies achieving economic successes, through an approach that simultaneously creates co benefits for sustainable development of communities. Successes of tourism and social development are inter dependent. So tourism should promote equality, justice, inclusion and equity. The shared value model can elevate both the travel industry and host communities. The 22nd Inter University seminar on sustainable tourism brought gathered students at Technical University of Kenya to discuss Sustainability Beyond The Tourism Experiences~Creating Value For Host Communities & Suppliers
Creating value for communities in tourism is a process. It requires cooperation, skills, and knowledge. The first step in creating shared value in the tourism value chains is cooperation between different stakeholders. The second step is ensuring that the right knowledge and skills are present to integrate shared value in the value chain, ensuring equity and inclusivity in benefit distribution for all stakeholders involved. Respect to host communities through purposeful engagement is key to having shared value.
Tourism is used as a tool for development. Development will always have problematic issues to be addressed. Sustainable tourism should help address such issues. Sustainable tourism is a goal that requires policies and planning to ensure that tourism occurs in a certain way. For instance, when we develop tourism infrastructure for dual use, we create shared value.
Who should create shared value?
Communities have the first role in creating shared values in the tourism value chain, by showing capacity and interest in tourism. The authentic experience of a destination is dependent on host communities. If the destination does not involve communities in planning and execution of activities, authenticity is compromised. It is a win win situation when destination activities support the host community through involvement thus creating value to the visitor experience and host community livelihood.
It is possible to involve local communities in tourism value chains, through direct, indirect and tertiary linkages. One of the best indicators that show performance of the tourism value chain at any destination, is the status of poverty of host communities in direct interaction with tourism. At times, host communities do not benefit from tourism, even in situations where resources used to create tourism experience are owned by host community. Sustainable tourism ensures that issues of benefit sharing are addressed in the tourism value chain, thereby contributing to prosperity of communities. It is important to link tourism shared values in the value chains, with the SDGs. Finding where the host community fit within the value chain is important, as it also determines how they can benefit from tourism in a destination. Employment is one of the many entry points through which communities can get access to benefits in tourism value chains.
Some of the biggest barriers of integrating local communities to tourism value chains are;
• lack of access to adequate capital,
• low entrepreneurial and enterprise development skills,
• weak management, and
• Lack of support from mainstream firms.
Why transform the tourism value chain in Kenya?
- To foster green growth.
- To support and enhance well-being of communities.
- To ensure fit within local and global developmental strategies.
When tourism operates on the principle of shared value, gaps between community and tourism diminish, and tourism is elevated by society, and accepted as a legitimate industry.
Outdoor Learning Activity
Learning excursion: Trip to Railway Museum.
Let’s Go Travel Uniglobe
Students and Faculty from Technical University of Kenya
Faculty representative from Dedan Kimathi University of Science and Technology
Universities in Attendance
Murang’a Technical University
Dedan Kimathi University
University of Nairobi
Technical University of Kenya-Host
Total number of Students in attendance: 87