What did you learn from the Rural Tourism Conference?
Which of the background reading documents did you read and would
you recommend to others?
Do you have any comments about the timing of the conference?
In total, how many hours did you invest in the conference, including
reading and preparing messages?
Which of the following topics were covered well in the Rural
Which of the following topics would you like to see more coverage?
What did you learn from the Rural
Well learning about rural tourism as a very well organized
way to improve the economical and social position for the indigenous
communities, keeping always their cultural manners and their
way of life without a hig impact of the foreigners into their
normal life. Second the main goal is to keep clear defined the
limit between a business and a community job.
The most valuable aspect of the conference was the chance to
share ideas with other professionals in different parts of the
world. The conference topic was perhaps too broad, and the different
threads to numerous, to be able to come to conclusions and recommendations
in the two week period. But I think several interesting points
were made which merit follow up. For me it would be particularly
interesting to see a compilation of case studies, with lessons
learned (both good and bad). In terms of developing country
projects, the Costa Rican cases could be very informative to
study, given that this country seems to have been involved in
rural/community tourism for more years, and to have learned
how to 'do it right.'
Insights into other country's/ region's approaches and perspectives
on the topic. Mostly, however, the conference confirmed my understanding
of "rural tourism" being a complex and hard to define
segment of the tourism industry or general economic development.
4. Folks seem to mush "rural" and "wilderness"
together when they probably need to recognize a three-part categorization:
urban, rural, and remote. Otherwise no real surprises.
The conference topic was rather broad, and there were few active
participants and in particular the Spanish dialogo proved to
be unpopular. Unlike previous planeta conferences, there was
a relative lack of pulse and direction. I would recommend that
future on-line conferences have a very specific topic (geographical
or thematical), and that only experts on that particular topic
are invited to form a form of on-line panel, present papers,
and reply to questions from the general "audience"
as in real world conferences. Otherwise there is no difference
than simply having one more bulletin board forum on a topic.
Anyway, just a thought.
I learned that there are several different terms which could
be used to describe different aspects of rural tourism. Some
people have found that the terminology alone can determine the
relative success of funding and marketing efforts. I learned
that many people who work with communities have found that certification
is not the best way to support rural tourism initiatives. They
have found that it is more effective to train the local population
undertaking these initiatives than to train the consumer on
what to look for. Finally, I was also made to think about the
differences between rural communities as tourism destination,
and rural communities with intact traditional livelihoods. I
learned that the economic patterns in a community profoundly
affect the culture of that community.
The whole process of participating in the conference has been
helpful to me. I have been able to learn and understand the
opportunities that rural tourism offers for sustainable development,
which is the topic I am interested. I truly thank Planeta.com
and the supporters for the organization; as well as all the
participants for their feedback.
Which of the following background reading documents did you
read and would you recommend to others?
Rural Tourism Fair 50%
Pluma Hidalgo - Ron Mader 25%
Paths - Barbara Kastelein 25%
Ecotourism Declaration 50%
Prioridades para el desarrollo del turismo rural - Ron Mader
Rural Tourism as a Tool for Development in Mexico - Rodrigo
Forum On-Line Library25%
Mountain Tourism 37.5%
Interview with Bill Tuffin25%
Interview with Andrew Hammerman and Michelle Kirby37.5%
can help mend a fractured world - Rick Steves25%
Conservation and Your Vacation - Beatrice Blake 25%
Ecotourism- Beatrice Blake 25%
Challenge for Conservationists' - Mac Chapin (PDF) 12.5%
Certification - Ron Mader 12.5%
Do you have any comments about
the timing of the conference?
1. well the main idea must be if this could be like webinars
online accessed and offline support with ppt docs or something
to increase the learning of the experience
2. It seems like much of the first week got taken up with the
first posts of participants. I wonder whether perhaps those
introductions which set up the themes & threads of interest,
might not be solicited 'pre-conference' so that the first week
could be used to focus in on those already identified themes.
Then the second week could be for follow up, point-counterpoint,
conclusions & recommendations.
3. Timing was fine. Unfortunately, I was not able to participate
in any of the "live chats" due to travel. I found
it most useful to schedule some time in the morning before getting
sucked in to a day's regular work to read up on the posts.
4. I thought we started slowly, but Ron assured me that this
was typical. I never got the feeling that "rural tourism"
was a burning issue for anyone.
5. I thought the conference went by very quickly. Although I
read all of the posts and contributed whenever new ideas sparked
interest, I felt almost as if it were only just getting started.
Maybe it would help to either create an agenda of more specific
topics to discuss within specific time frames to quickly foster
deeper and more focused discussion - or - to create independent
dialogue rooms on specific topics when interest areas emerge,
again to create deeper discussion on narrower topics.
6. It is only my fault, I wish I had more time to get more into
7. The two-weeks period was adequate for the conference.
In total, how many hours did you
invest in the conference, including reading and preparing messages?
more than 30 hours12.5%
Which of the following topics were covered
well in the Rural Tourism Conference?
Urban Ecotourism Linkages16.7%
Which of the following topics
would you like to see more coverage?
Green Building 16.7%
Urban Ecotourism Linkages33.3%
Other (please specify)16.7%
Do you have any specific follow-up
plans? If the Rural Tourism Conference motivated you, let us
know what is on your agenda.
I will create a rural tourism portal for ecuador
Personal follow up plans: read those references that I didn't
get around to before. I would like to see follow up in terms
of more sharing of lessons learned (not just the positive 'spins'
that most of us learn from our marketing experiences, but also
the pitfalls to avoid). I also think Ron had some good suggestions
for follow up, i.e, that we share lists of what our respective
rural areas have to offer in terms of tourism (and need in terms
of information and other assistance).
Still planning to work on rural tourism/ sustainable development
issues mostly in Russia.
I didn't get the impression we were "covering" topics
(as in questions 7 and 8 above), nor that there were threads
left hanging or areas with momentum for follow up. So I guess
I'll just wait for the next conference!
I would like to complement my paper or probably do another one
with the feedback and comments of participants.
Thanks again to Ron, Antonis and others!
Very valuable information, but posts were often too long and
hard to keep in context. ALso, it seemed like most people were
more concerned about sharing their perspective rather than engaging
in a dialogue and responding to other's questions etc. I think
the posts should be limited in lengths and maybe structured
better so it is easier to follow and have some sort of an exchange
on topics. Maybe you should be asked to check what sub theme
your post is on (and it should only be one) when you post it
and then participants can sort the thread. Just a thought. But
it is great to have such a forum at all, so don't get me wrong
I enjoy the conferences as a chance to see what other people
It was a pleasure to participate. Thank you for the opportunity
to do so! The effort that went into create the event is obvious.
Cheers and congratulations!