With more travelers seeing authentic experiences, cultural heritage tourism is on the rise. While tourism presents new opportunities for tribes, many Indigenous communities across the Americas are determining how best to protect their traditions, shape their narratives and benefit economically from this growing trend.
The Indigenous Tourism Forum of the Americas, which will be held on March 17 and 18, 2020 in Albuquerque, New Mexico, will provide a platform for community leaders, policy-makers and business owners to share their experiences, learn from one another and better understand how to drive change through tourism—without compromising their cultural values.
Organized by the Organization of American States and the George Washington University International Institute of Tourism Studies in collaboration with the U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs, the forum marks the first time that Indigenous leaders from across the Americas will gather to discuss the important and timely topic of cultural heritage tourism. Over the two day event, representatives from Indigenous communities, governments, nonprofit organizations and academic institutions will participate in roundtable discussions, workshops and networking sessions. Participants will also have opportunities to experience local culture, visit nearby communities and sample Indigenous food while developing an understanding of how to drive change through tourism.
Tentative panels and roundtables to include:
- Defining and Managing Tourism from an Indigenous Perspective
- Ensuring Authenticity and Protecting Cultural Heritage
- Re-establishing Connections in the Americas through Tourism Products and Experiences
- Fostering Partnerships and Financing Sustainable Indigenous Community Tourism
- Co-creating Community-Based Rural Tourism Guidelines