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Subject: Eco-tourism symposium Call for Abstracts

The Center for Tropical Ecology and Conservation
Department of Environmental Studies

Annual Symposium
Call for abstracts:

Ecotourism:
Can tourism, biodiversity conservation and sustainable community development be merged?

Saturday, November 3th, 2012

Antioch University New England
Keene, New Hampshire USA

Ecotourism, as defined by its proponents, aims to promote both environmental conservation and the stability and resilience of the surrounding communities. Inspired by environmentally and culturally degrading effects of the mainstream tourism industry, ecotourism appeals to the more ‘responsible traveler’ who wants to help promote conservation and immerse in local culture. Despite these good intentions, closer examination reveals that ecotourism, in many cases, has contributed to social and environmental degradation. Rapid economic growth inspired by ecotourism brings forth power dynamics, often resulting in the alienation of local communities in the conservation of their own lands, as well as increased visitation rates to fragile environments. Critically needed capacity building, policies, education, and appropriate infrastructure for such growth to enable local participation and stability are often ignored. There are, however, successful ecotourism enterprises that have been able to merge community development and sustainable growth with conservation. The purpose of this symposium is to bring together professionals, scholars and practitioners with differing backgrounds in economics, politics, anthropology, natural sciences, business and management, as well as students and educators, to explore how ecotourism can be a successful tool in biodiversity conservation. We will examine the social complexities and ethics of cultural and social impacts of ecotourism. This will allow for participants to learn from the merging of different themes, such as sustainable development, local empowerment, social equality, business ethics and biodiversity conservation, all highlighting the intricate dynamics of this growing industry.

Call for Abstracts:
The Center for Tropical Ecology and Conservation (CTEC) at Antioch University is currently accepting proposals for oral presentations and posters that address the following goals:

  • To give symposium attendees the opportunity to critically explore what ecotourism means and the role of ecotourism in biodiversity and cultural conservation.
  • To explore how ecotourism can break free from the framework of the mainstream tourism industry to truly work towards conservation of biodiversity through support for sustainable growth of local economies and culture
  • To address how, in the complex web of stakeholders, the needs of local communities can be protected and met, especially in areas of low employment and/or poverty
  • To explore the role of non-profit organizations as a bridge between local community needs and the interests of other stakeholders
  • To provide examples of successful ecotourism enterprises that work to sustain biodiversity conservation and cultural integrity through the inclusion and empowerment of local community
  • To create a framework for understanding and evaluating ecotourism in an effort to help society make responsible travel choices

Submission Guidelines:

For each submission (multiple submissions considered) please include:

  1. The symposium goal(s) your abstract addresses
  2. A 300 word or less abstract of your presentation
  3. Indicate your preference for a presentation or a poster
  4. Name, affiliation(s), address, phone number, and email
  5. Submit two to three potential discussion questions related to your submission. These may be used in the discussion to follow presentations

About CTEC:
The Center for Tropical Ecology and Conservation (CTEC), in the Environmental Studies Department at Antioch University New England, promotes the sustainable and just use of tropical ecosystems by training conservation leaders, conducting conservation research with partner organizations, and serving as an educational resource for the New England region.

All submissions should be sent electronically to the symposium coordinator:
Emily Dark
edark@antioch.edu
Subject: Submission 2012 Symposium
Deadline: August 31, 2012 (until spaces are full)

 


Beth Kaplin <bkaplin@antioch.edu>
Monday, July 09, 2012

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