World Heritage and Tourism


World Heritage and Tourism: Managing for the Global and the Local, Qu?bec City, 3-4 Jun 2010; Deadline 15 Dec

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World Heritage and Tourism: Managing for the Global and the Local

3-4 June 2010, Québec City, Canada

As of 2009, approximately 900 sites are registered on the UNESCO World Heritage list. For many sites inscription on the World Heritage List acts as a promotional device and the management challenge is one of protection, conservation and dealing with increased numbers of tourists. For other sites, designation has not brought anticipated expansion in tourist numbers and associated investments. What is clear is that tourism is now a central concern to the wide array of stakeholders involved with World Heritage Sites. We increasingly need to understand the multi-layered relationships between the diverse range of Sites and tourism and tourists and, to focus on how tourism is effectively managed for the benefit of all. This conference seeks to explore a series of critical and fundamental questions being raised by the various ‘owners’, managers and local communities involved with World Heritage Sites in relation to tourism: Why do tourists visit some World Heritage Sites and not others? What is the tourist experience of such Sites? How successful are Sites in the management of tourists? What roles do local communities play in Site management? How can the ‘spirit of place’ be protected in the face of the sheer volume of tourists? How can some Sites maximize the potential of a sustainable tourism for the purposes of poverty alleviation and community cohesion? How effective are communication strategies in bringing stakeholders together? What management skills are needed to address the needs of different stakeholders, different sites and different cultures?


Original papers are invited to consider subject areas including, but not limited to, the following themes:

  • Marketing in the management of World Heritage Sites;
  • The pragmatics of managing tourists;
  • Financing World Heritage;
  • Community involvement in Site management;
  • Relations between intangible cultural heritage and Site management;
  • The role of the private tourism sector;
  • The nature of tourist experience and behaviour at World Heritage Sites;
  • Shaping local, regional and national identities through Site inscription;
  • Issues of governance and transnational regulation;
  • Legal rights and notions of ‘ownership’;
  • The management of World Heritage ‘values’;
  • The geo-politics of inclusion and exclusion;
  • Methods of Site evaluation;
  • Managing spiritual values and biodiversity;
  • The role of UNESCO and the political economies of designation.

Please submit your 500 word abstract (in French or English) including a title and full contact details as an electronic file to Professor Maria Gravari-Barbas ( or Laurent Bourdeau ( as soon as possible but no later than 15th December 2009.

Conference Organisers: UNESCO/UNITWIN NETWORK for Culture, Tourism and Development; Faculty of Business Administration, Université Laval; Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne; and Centre for Tourism and Cultural Change, Leeds Metropolitan University.

For further details on the conference please visit: or or email to