Over the past 30 years, worldwide growth in international arrivals to events and meetings are outpacing the national income growth on a global scale. It's clear that international tourism and conferences serve as significant catalysts for economic development.
Despite the fact that the tourism and travel industry contribute significantly to any economy, unfortunately, the industries aren't protected from the sinister power of terrorism.
While natural disasters can impact tourism, the potential threat associated with terrorism creates a lingering threat that can adversely impact the economic growth of a destination.
Last year, in 2017, cities around the globe fell victim to terrorism or impacted by a natural disaster. With elevated concerns about global security, the issues of risk management, event, and venue security, and crisis communication have become key points of conversation.
Today, facing a crisis means that the entire destination and its partners should be prepared with a toolkit of solutions when, not if, such an event occurs. Especially with digital media outpacing traditional media sources, minor incidents can be escalated into a full-scale crisis that can damage a destination's reputation, attractiveness, and revenues, well beyond the incident.
Changing the Conversation: International Tourism Security Summit (ITSS)
As an industry, it's time that we examine and discuss responses to current realities. What responses should destination marketers, and the broader tourism industry, prepare to ensure a positive reputation. The industry needs to learn the best practices in destination resilience. With the terrible crises fresh in our minds, we, as an industry, have a responsibility to collaborate and provide innovative and practical solutions to ensure a clear path for each of our destinations and for our industry.
It is precisely this mission that inspired Jerusalem to organize the first International Tourism Security Summit (ITSS). This summit aims to serve as a platform for discussion and provide a collaborative environment to consider tangible solutions.
ITSS is an innovative and leading global summit on destination marketing and image management in an era of security instability, terrorism, and crises. This pioneering summit will look at the intersections of tourism with terrorism and security, with regards to reputation management, crisis communication, and resilience marketing. The summit will be a meeting place for any tourism and hospitality decision maker, marketer, operator and security professional that may be affected by a crisis or a security event.
As INCON, a global leader of conference organizers, stated: "ITSS is a very important conference for all those involved in the tourism industry in general and for the Tourism Bureau in particular due to their vulnerability to security instability."
The conference will take place on October 7-9, 2018 in Jerusalem, Israel. (http://www.tourismsafety.org).
Learn how Jerusalem outlined, in a recent article, a 5 Point Plan for Destination Resilience for destinations in advance of the summit.