Tourism employers are discovering that their workforce requires certain skills that tourism graduates seem to be missing. Identifying industry expectations for tourism graduates is an important step in developing tourism curricula that are responsive to industry needs. Educational institutions are therefore encouraged to incorporate key skills in their curricula. This chapter represents an effort to create an interface between the industry and higher education institutions. It reports on the findings of an interview study conducted with tourism professionals who represent various sectors of the tourism industry in Athens, Greece. The geographic area was chosen for its representation of a number of tourism sectors. The study asked about the industry’s expectations regarding education and skills of tourism graduates entering the workplace. The chapter presents background information from the literature regarding international and Greek experiences, and the methodology employed within the study. Study findings identify specific industry expectations for tourism graduates and suggest that there is a considerable gap between what is taught in tourism education and what is actually needed and required by the industry. These findings replicate and complement those of previous studies in the vocational link of tourism courses in Greece. Taken together, these efforts offer a useful and cross-validated view of the demands tourism graduates are facing, and a mandate to tourism educators to develop tourism curricula in response to them. The chapter suggests that incorporating industry input in the curriculum will allow tourism education to provide an improved service for its graduates and tourism employers.
Dimitrios P. Stergiou and David Airey
Edited by Pierre Benckendorff and Anita Zehrer
Chapter 1 sets the scene for Marketing Rural Tourism: Experience and Enterprise. The emphasis is on placing individual narratives within collective stories with a view to illustrating the ingenuity and sociality of actors involved in selling and performing rurality. The focus is on how rurality is experienced dialectically as a resonance between past life stories (through shared memory) and present life stories that hint at the creative tactics employed by actors in (re)working the place to generate custom and fuel tourists’ imagination.
Nils Wåhlin, Maria Kapsali, Malin H. Näsholm and Tomas Blomquist
This chapter introduces the theme of the book by situating the narrative in an urban context. Through the lens of a ‘cultural turn’ perspective, potential city development avenues for the way ahead are discussed. High expectations are being made in relation to contemporary cities concerning how creativity can raise the imaginative capability among citizens and harness opportunities tied to what we in this book call ‘culture-driven growth’. The underlying assumption is that ordinary people can make the extraordinary happen if given the chance. Urban strategies, nowadays, are beginning to take on this challenge using increasingly sophisticated means by bringing forward ways of organizing that stimulates the sought-after values. In the international context is the European Capital of Culture initiative by the European Union a significant example of such strivings. In this chapter, we outline the characteristics of this large initiative and how these conditions became translated in one of the recent ECoCs – the City of Umeå in Sweden. This case is the centerpiece of our book and having been assessed by the European Union, it has now been forwarded by them as a role model for cities in the future that aspire to the title of European Capital of Culture. According to recent developments of ECoCs, the Umeå strategy of ‘co-creation’ based on the reciprocal dependency between the citizens and the city was formulated in a timely manner and attracted a lot of attention. This provided a good platform for our research project, which this book is based upon, through which we have investigated the pros and cons of such a strategy. The chapter concludes with an explanation of the analytic approach we pursued when conducting our study and how this is dealt with in the different chapters of the book.