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CSU to host Tourism Naturally virtual conference

FORT COLLINS — Colorado State University will host the Tourism Naturally conference, a free virtual conference that highlights industry trends in nature-based tourism.

The event will be Oct. 26-27. This year’s theme for the conference is “Protected Areas, Tourism, and a Changing World.” 

CSU’s Department of Human Dimensions of Natural Resources and the Center for Protected Area Management are the hosts of the 2022 conference. Industry researchers, practitioners, private sector partners and communities will discuss the impact that protected areas and nature has on humans, and the tourism industry. 

“Nature holds measurable mental and physical health benefits for those who have access to these spaces. As such, a global struggle exists to not only restore damaged ecosystems but to stimulate greater access to natural areas, especially for marginalized communities,” David Knight, conference co-chair and assistant professor in the Department of Human Dimensions of Natural Resources at CSU, said in a press statement. “Tourism Naturally encourages crucial conversations to inspire industry action in addressing these issues.”

As noted in conference information, “In many parts of the world, protected areas have closed visitation and tourism experiences due to a loss of funding, wildlife protection, the COVID-19 pandemic and more. This has led to the collapse of local economies, job loss, and spikes in illegal extraction activities. Dramatic shifts in global climate change, deteriorating human health, economic uncertainty, and a population disconnected from nature has impacted the industry. Tourism Naturally aims to address these important topics.”

The conference will offer student engagement and early career professional engagement. Some sessions will be directed at people interested in careers in tourism. 

More information including the speaker lineup can be found at the conference website.

The conference is free and open to the public. Registration is required for attendance.

Source: BizWest

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