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Planeta.com's Ron Mader to Discuss Global Trends at 2007 Ecotourism New

(Forimmediaterelease.net) Planeta.com (July 2007) - Planeta.com's Ron Mader is a keynote speaker at
the 2007 Ecotourism NZ Conference in Greymouth August 1-3, 2007. The event
is hosted by the Tai Poutini Polytechnic.

"I am pleased to return to the Pacific region to discuss developing trends
and provide 'lessons learned' from around the world," said Mader, who spoke
earlier this year at the annual Business Development Symposium for
Indigenous Tourism Operators in Australia.

KEYNOTE

Global Perspective of Ecotourism: Listening to Visitors and Locals —
Ecotourism means something different to everyone and in this review Ron
Mader discusses the ways to engage visitors and locals. He presents an
overview of key issues are being discussed around the world including the
heated debate on carbon emission offsetting and tourism, the role awards
play in developing awareness and how the web is being used for distance
learning. Results from the recent Planeta.com review of the impact of the
International Year of Ecotourism will be included as well as proposals for
using grassroots events and Web 2.0 technology as tools to connect visitors
and locals.

CARBON EMISSIONS

Most visitors to New Zealand indicate strong interest in nature and
conservation. New Zealand is taking a loading role in discussing carbon
emissions and developing strategies in respect to long haul travel. Visitors
who travel a great distance are conscious of why they are traveling and what
they are seeking. How will New Zealand officials answer questions about the
environmental impact of transportation? As travelers are increasingly
concerned about climate change, will this manifest in changing travel plans?

AWARDS

Participants in the Ethical Marketing of Ecotourism Conference and the
Ecotourism Certification Workshop emphasized that awards play an important
role in establishing a positive reputation for an eco lodge or guide
service. Acknowledging best practices in tourism ecotourism is still
evolving. Leaders who attempt to work in an ethical and ecological fashion
do so not necessarily for the recognition, but appreciate the kudos given by
their peers.

WEB 2.0

The changes at hand in tourism are notable. The online booking industry has
been transformed with reviews by travelers and by operators and associations
using new online tools that revolutionize the way visitors are guided. A
challenge for operators lies in understanding the new venues for dialogue
and promotion. As veteran trend watcher Steve Bridger points out, much of
the action is taking place 'out there' in social networks and online
communities.

USING THE WEB FOR DISTANCE LEARNING

How to best leverage limited resources depends on bridging the online and
offline worlds. Challenges for educational institutions will be the
incorporation of rating systems that evaluate individual professors and
student work. The 'ethics' within institutions will be a hot topic in 2008.

FIVE YEARS AFTER THE INTERNATIONAL YEAR OF ECOTOURISM

In May 2007 Planeta.com conducted a survey to evaluate the development of
ecotourism in the five years since the International Year of Ecotourism.
Three dozen respondents have responded. Among the finding: respondents are
cynical about the development of ecotourism, believe that indigenous people
are not actively included and give low marks to United Nations Environment
Programme and World Tourism Organization. These criticisms, Mader argues,
should be taken as a roadmap for making immediate corrections that can win
over the critics.

Details
www.planeta.com/planeta/07/0701newzealand.html

Conference
www.ecotourismnz.com

www.planeta.com

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