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Photo: Sami Niemeläinen


4 -5 February 2020

Joensuu, North Karelia Biosphere Reserve (Finland)


To mark the end of the SHAPE project we will be holding a conference on 4-5 February in Joensuu, Finland. Hosted by our Finnish project partners, we look forward to welcoming participants from around Europe to discuss our experiences of developing ecotourism initiatives and explore ways of using SHAPE  outputs and experience to inform and support further ecotourism development.

The conference will focus on practical ways of developing sustainable ecotourism in rural areas rich in natural and cultural heritage. SHAPE aims to develop tourism that generates local economic value while preserving and enhancing the natural and cultural assets upon which it depends. There is an emphasis in SHAPE on the creation of partnerships that bring together businesses, communities and managers of natural and cultural heritage. We would like to encourage members of these groups who are engaged or interested in ecotourism management and planning to participate in the conference and share their own experiences. The conference will also be of interest to those involved in other tourism-related projects as well as researchers and policy makers interested or active in ecotourism.

We will present the perspectives and findings from SHAPE during the early part of the conference. This will be followed by a range of thematic workshops during which participants are invited to present their own experiences and points of view. These discussions will highlight innovative approaches and best practice, and explore opportunities for future international collaboration on sustainable ecotourism.


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