Leeds Met expertise sought by Chilean government
Dr Xavier Font has been contracted by a number of government agencies to provide advice and training on developing sustainable tourism certification programmes for businesses and destinations.
In his latest trip to Chile in December 2012, he ran three regional meetings consulting stakeholders on the role of sustainable tourism destination indicators and criteria. Part of the workshops involved training the companies on the different opportunities for using these indicators as management based tools for the destinations.
In addition, the trip provided the opportunity to meet with the Chilean Economic Development Agency (CORFO) for whom Dr Font had prepared a funding proposal worth £25,000 to Leeds Metropolitan that will help our University develop a consultancy service advising small firms on how to market and communicate their sustainability achievements. The pitch was well received and Dr Font was asked to expand on the written proposal on his next visit.
In a separate meeting, Codesser, the Cooperation for Social Development of Rural Sectors, showed an interest in the same proposal and are currently fundraising for it. Finally in a meeting with the Federation of Tourism Businesses of Chile, Dr Font was asked to prepare a proposal for £5000 to train small hotels meeting sustainability criteria how to communicate their achievements. A final meeting with Sernatur, the national tourist board, resulted in an agreement to continue working together in the plan for a national sustainable tourism certification programme.