SUMMER SCHOOL: Leadership and Governance for sustainable tourism

Naples hosted the first edition of the Summer School from the 8th to the 12th of July at the University of Suor Orsola Benincasa premises.

The PM4SD™ methodology was officially launched. PM4SD™ is the adaptation for the tourism sector of project management methodology PRINCE2; Projects In Controlled Environments. PM4SD™ is the first Sustainable Tourism Project Management certified methodology based on efficiency management and focused on benefits, while involving donors throughout the project cycle life.

1. The foundation course

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This first Summer School had 2 aims:

  1. Unite donors and tourism professionals around the interest of a strong methodology of project management.
  2. Enable professionals already taught during 2013 training courses to obtain a higher level (practitioner). According to the results the trainers could afterwards become official trainers of PM4SD™.

25 tourism professionals who have already followed the first training in the different sessions offered around Europe during 2013 (Naples, Barcelona, Brussels and Leeds) were trained in this practitioner session. The diversity of the group (territories, consultants, networks, associations, enterprises, freelance…) and the level of experiences in managing projects eased profitable exchanges between working groups.

This training was the occasion to evaluate the implementation of PM4SD™. PM4SD™ has real advantages and proposes a methodology adapted to the needs of tourism projects (measure benefits and consequences). The session enabled the delegates to understand the concepts in which we have to focus in the future trainings.

Less friendly was the exam “PM4SD™ Practitioner”, a hardship for all (3h) luckily followed by a winery tour…

2. The conference: Leadership and Governance for Sustainable Tourism

coffee breakDuring the Summer School in Naples a high-level conference took place gathering the key donors, policy makers and industry representatives.

The conference welcomed speakers from international organisations of sustainable tourism and cooperation. Xavier Font and Silvia Barbone opened the conference announcing the official launching of PM4SD™ methodology at European and International level. The University of Washington DC and University of Naples have shown their interest in including this methodology.

Around a hundred people participated in the conference. Participants had the opportunity to appreciate the perspective of big international organisations such as the Global Partnership for Sustainable TourismUNDP, European Commission, NECSTouR, International Centre for Responsible Tourism ICRT, European Investment Bank and others… For the first time all these actors giving their input on “sustainable project management”.

This conference had different interventions, some generated real debate, others a bit of controversy, and the rest were very much appreciated. We could divide speakers by donors, international experts, academics and actors of PM4SD™.

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Donors explained how they manage funds and how they assess the impact of funded projects (UNEP with their own system, EIB, German Cooperation Agency, the European Commission, UNDP…).

International experts such as M. Frederic Thomas from University Paris 1 – Pantheon Sorbonne, raised the issues that project managers experiment on the field.

Academics presented their research and studies focusing on the need for project management to integrate all the stakeholders and in particular the donors (Harold Goodwin and Xavier Font from Leeds Metropolitan University).

The PM4SD™ actors took advantage of the Conference to officially launch the new methodology PM4SD™ with the participation of M. Allan Harphan director of APMG, the international accreditation body who sees PM4SD™ as a strategic orientation.

Silvia Barbone, director of the FEST – Foundation for European Sustainable Tourism, mentioned that the methodology was based on PRINCE 2. Then, she presented the future action plan of PM4SD™. APMG accredits PM4SD™ and FEST gathers the trained delegates, the trainers and the project managers involved.

The last day ended with the presentation of the Naples declaration to the participants who made some suggestions. The donors strongly reacted to this document that highlighted the lack of involvement from the funding institutions in the management of projects they fund.

This Conference succeeded in welcoming international experts ensuring the high quality of the first PM4SD™ Summer School.

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