Young Tourism: be sustainable. be entrepreneurial. be creative
With regard to an extremely difficult economic situation in Europe (high unemployment rate in particular of youngsters e.g. in Spain) and to the lack of professional orientation in secondary schools (students & employers complain a lack of essential skills required on the labour market, high drop-out rate in apprenticeships & universities) we promote in this project the sense of entrepreneurship and initiative: we make students the real actors in the framework of a “Tourism advertising agency”. Tourism is economically the most important sector worldwide (share of the global economic output approx. 9.3 %). As an economic industry tourism creates a multiplier effect and offers about 230 millions jobs world-wide in different fields: mobility, hotel industry, entertainment and other service providers.The number of tourists is nowadays about 1,3 milliard (1950: 50 million) and will increase in the future (thanks to mobility, Internet etc.).But on the other hand tourism is a sector that contributes enormously to the destruction of resources (forests, water),to the increasing emission of CO2 and climate change. The incrusion into unspoiled landscape leads to a threat of biodiversity and cultural identity.
Students are an important target group in terms of tourism today and tomorrow. We prepare them to behave as customers aware of environmental/social cognition & behaviour and considering the consequences of their acting. They discover the natural and cultural richness of their areas and promote it to young people all over Europe.Our areas are all less known in terms of tourism. Young people develop marketing ideas for peers that play an inferiour role in sustainable,regional tourism.Our project is carried out transnationally because tourism is an international business with a growing demand for international destinations and tourism agencies are often international enterprises. Protecting the environment is a global affair as well. Only international cooperation provides the opportunity to reduce the emission of CO2 and the waste of resources on a world wide scale.During the project term we establish a multinational “Tourism advertising agency” that is based on the commitment to the “three-pillar-system of sustainability”:our products/services are in line with the insight that economic performance, social/cultural responsibility and protection of the natural environment are inseparable.European youngsters develop a sense of active citizenship and entrepreneurial thinking while acting in a “Tourism advertising agency”.The promotion of entrepreneurship is a great need in all five partner schools.This project is brought to life through an intensive cooperation with NGO’s,tourism management offices and “green” entreprises (e.g. in the field of ecological agriculture & forestry) at a local and regional level.Due to their expertise our students learn practically about tourism management and develop the promotional design of an interactive multilingual tourism guide: “Tourism 4 You”.This guide promotes-with the view to youngsters-the treasures of the very different areas in which our partner schools are located: from the very north of Europe (Sweden) to the center (Poland, Germany),the southwest (Spain) and the southeast of Europe (Turkey).Our schools have developed environmental and ICT competences which will be connected to entrepreneurial thinking in this project.The students create collaboratively a mobile application and web site “Tourism 4 you” which are important tools to reach this generation. The mobile application contains general information,services, activities,maps,networks etc. The Internet presence includes promotional videos, forest guides, interactive sections like sounds of nature,etc. In terms of the current importance of “e-tourism” these digital ways of promotion are future-orientated and help to increase the digital competences of our students.These tools will be in use after the completion of the project.In addition, we publish a paperback version of this guide to be used in schools during multidisciplinary activities (geography, natural sciences, solcial studies, languages etc.) and in preparation of local school excursions. It is offered to local & regional marketing offices in order to disseminate the impact of regional tourism and to arouse European youngster’s interest for the local areas.By promoting regional tourism in a multilingual way, competences in foreign languages are promoted.The eTwinning platform plays an essential role in our project: During the 5 meetings (exploration of the area and creation of promotional ideas) & the periods in-between the participants of the project (students, teachers & stakeholders) exchange their results concerning tourism and the design of the “Tourism 4 you” guide.They use this platform for ICT activities & networking.
The different phases of the project follow the guidline of this project: “be sustainable. be entrepreneurial. be creative.”