Cultural Leadership in Transition Tourism

Research Interest Cluster:


  • Elena Borin, Link Campus Univesrity, Italy
  • Mara Cerquetti, University of Macerata, Italy

About this RIC: 

Cultural tourism has proved to be a significant source of economic development for cultural destinations, but it has also emerged as a potentially controversial and unsustainable phenomenon. Over the last decades, we have witnessed, at the same time, overtourism and growing tourism pressure in some cities and regions (significantly hindering the quality of life of locals and the tourism experience in itself and putting the cultural heritage at risk) and insufficient development of tourism flows in other areas that nevertheless could have a promising attractiveness potential. Calls have been made on the need to design more sustainable tourism development models for cultural destinations, conceiving tourism as a means to increasing the quality of life and generating economic opportunities in cities and regions by involving their communities and stakeholders. 

This proposal for a RIC aims to gather international academics, researchers and professionals to discuss and analyze in-depth the potential role of cultural actors in this transition towards more sustainable models of cultural development, starting from the ongoing debate on cultural ecosystems as a key to reinterpret territories and their dynamics in a moment of change. The RIC explores the role of cultural actors as “leaders” of this change and their potential as drivers of culture-led innovation for tourism in cities and regions. 

The leadership of cultural actors has been analysed according to several perspectives and in several contexts but the research on it with reference to tourism and its potentialities in a moment of required and potentially profound change is still rather scarce.

The RIC will try to fill this gap by promoting international research and discussion aiming at:

  •  providing a deeper reflection on leadership in the tourism sector, bringing the discussion on tourism further with specific reference to cultural tourism;
  • examining the potentialities of cultural leadership in a context of change such as the post-pandemic scenario;
  • including multi-disciplinary and multi-perspective approaches to take inspirations from different disciplines and reflect on the current changes and perspectives in tourism;
  • providing an in-depth analysis of the role of culture in promoting a balance between quality of life, the protection/promotion of values and sustainable tourism development.

Research Interest Cluster:

Get involved!

Deadline: TBA

The RICs are open to ENCATC members, members of ENCATC’s ‘sister’ networks AAAE and TACPS. Non-network affiliated individuals will also be considered.