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Shaping together the future of tourism

Think Tank international

Experts visions

Gastronomie 2025 : Plus le circuit est court, plus la note sera salée ? »  


In the last few years the emotional and experiential nature of tourism reshapes its relationship with food as cultural heritage. Tourists want a ‘’sustainable’’ experience and seek to immerse themselves in culinary - gastronomic experiences  that are perceived to be traditional and local. Local foods with ancient origin are conceptualised as “authentic” products that symbolise the place and culture of the destination.   


Thus, one of the biggest food trends in the next coming decades will be the culinary storytelling.  In this content the reinvention of ‘’ancient foods’’ and the interpretation of the ancient gastronomy  together with the sourcing of ingredients from the immediate vicinity and the promotion of cultural diversity  will play important roles. The culinary tourism will offer much public history, experimental and public archaeology, narratives about  hyperlocality as a precious kind of heritage, rich sensory experiences and a hedonistic approach to the identity of the local food. It will also contribute to a more distinct local culture  that will be interesting both to locals and high- value tourists.

However,  it is clear the need for further research regarding the challenges, opportunities and threats that  it will have to face not only because of the social, economic, political and environmental changes but also because of the relationship of food and the production of ideology.


Having studied Sociology and Archaeology, Mariana Kavroulaki  specializes in Experimental, Sensory and Public Food Archaeology.

She  is the founder and organizer of the Symposia of Greek Gastronomy, which are  biennial weekend-long meetings devoted to all aspects of Greek food and drink & encourage cross-cultural and interdisciplinary dialogue (www.greekgastronomy.wordpress.com).  Mariana is the owner of Greek Culinary History & Cooking Adventures, a studio that explores the evolution of Greek cuisine throughout the centuries and encourage people to rethink historical dining through  period cookery lessons, sensory historical food walking tours, multi-sensory history-themed dinners and interactive lectures



She is a Board member at Historical, Folklore & Archaeological Society of Crete and the local organizer of the conference ‘’Communication across Cultures: Challenges and Prospects in the Global Context’’ (September 29, 1918. https://culturesconfechania.wixsite.com/culturesconfechania)

Kravoulaki Mariana


Information technology continues to change our society. Much of the information on the Internet today is being powered by computer programs that incorporate various levels of machine-learning based algorithms. Imagine a world wherein driverless cars roam the streets and highways, and robots deliver services at our homes, offices, hotels, restaurants, and tourist attractions; a world wherein humans are connected, through wearables and even devices built into our bodies, to the material and immaterial networks in a seamless, constant, and ubiquitous way; and, a world wherein there is no technical boundaries between travel and our everyday life because of our capabilities to represent and simulate the tourism-like experience. Information technology gives us new room for imagination and new room to envision our future. Particularly, it will continue to help us interpret and perhaps redefine what it means to be a tourist.

Zheng (Phil) Xiang, Ph.D.

Associate Professor

The Department of Hospitality and Tourism Management

Pamplin College of Business

Virginia Tech, USA


The Rise and fall of sustainable tourism


The future of sustainable tourism

In the next coming decades, tourism will face much more serious challenges due to its continuously rapid growth around the globe.  This fast expansion in terms of tourism demand and supply will require a revolutionary approach to its development in the future. So far, introducing sustainability as a strategy and practice to mitigate the negative impacts of fast tourism growth were led by global institutions. Organizations such as World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC), UNESCO and others adopted a top-down implementation strategy to control and manage tourism processes.  Such strategy, often termed "a glocal approach", was based on a wrong assumption that global sustainability standards may easily be imposed on any locality and place, transforming its tourism system into a sustainable one.  In practice, for various reasons, this strategy failed.  In my view, by 2050, tourism will be de-globalized and tourism sustainability will be predominantly sought locally and as a bottom-up process.  Tourism sustainability will become a relative term and a relative concept.  Sustainability as a strategy and as a set of management measures will be calibrated for each tourism locality and host community.  Sustainable development goals for each place will be tailored according to its specific environmental, cultural and economic capacities and based on the local attainability of those goals.  I believe that such radical transformation from a globally to locally-driven sustainability will serve much better tourists, tourism and host communities.

Yoel Mansfeld


The world within reach


            For many years, tourism has been one of the largest and fastest growing industries in the world. There has also been a spectacular growth in the number of air passengers in the last decade due to the growth of tourism and business travellers. The phenomenon of low-cost airlines began with the Southwest airline in the early 1970s in the United States. It gradually spread throughout Europe thanks to the single aviation market, and to the “Open Skies” Agreement between the United States and the European Union. This revolutionary phenomenon of low-cost fares is a key factor of competition in air transport which ultimately benefits the travellers.

            Airplanes are safer, less polluting and can carry more passengers than before. According to the Aviation Safety Network[1], 2017 had the lowest number of aviation accidents in 72 years. After the second World War, global air traffic has increased from a few million passengers to a total of 4.3 billion in 2018 which is expected to increase to 6 billion by 2030[2]. Security measures will be improved by implementing the European Travel Information and Authorization System (ETIAS) in 2020.

            The share of air transport in international tourism is skyrocketing. Despite the rise in the price of oil, ICAO forecasts more than 60 million aircraft movements per year by 2030, or 200,000 per day. Essentially meaning the world has gotten smaller due to the easy accessibility to flights.

            The use of electric planes has already been initiated. The E. Fan airplane designed by the Airbus group made its first flight in 2015 with only one seat on board but a four-seater version is being created for 2020. Other manufacturers are already taking the lead, such as the Elektra one created by PC-Aero, which in 2015 made a 2-hour trip for 190km or the E-genius from the University of Stuttgart in Germany, which flew 320 km. These technological innovations are occurring in various countries.

            In this perspective, how can we foresee a more ethical and more efficient future of aviation for everyone? What role will air transport play in international tourism by 2050?


Dr. Jocelyne Napoli, Université de Toulouse

[1] Flight Safety Foundation. (2017) Asn Data Show 2017 was Safest Year in Aviation History, 30 December

[2]  Heguy, J-B. (2017) IATA : 4,3 milliards de passagers aériens attendus en 2018, Air & Cosmos, 5 décembre



Tourism is often described as the fastest growing industry. Since 1950 international tourism arrivals have risen from 25 million to 1,322 million in 2017. Last year ‘tourist arrivals grew by a remarkable 7%’ (UNWTO, 2018, p. 1). What does the tourism industry want to achieve with such growth rates?  Already, inhabitants of cities like Venice, Amsterdam, Barcelona and Berlin show clear signs of negative opinions and behaviour towards tourists. But not only the social aspect has become critical. The concept of sustainable tourism that protects the environment is still in its infancy despite a 30-year history. Some (e.g. Wheeller) would even argue that it is a complete fiasco, failing to protect anything but the interests of the Western tourists and ‘their’ tourism industry. Those developments are compounded by the impacts of events such as climate change, water pollution and the loss of biodiversity. Economical, short-term thinking often leads to the destruction of the touristic resources that create the wealth in the first place. In short, we are all sewing on the branch that we are sitting on. What could be done to avoid at least some of those consequences?


Dirk Reiser - Experts' Vision Text