For the Responsible Tourism Events at ITB Asia this year, we continue to bring you the best and most relevant speakers that can inspire and change the way you think about travel. Responsible Tourism is not just a label, it is essentially the way we do business and the way we experience the world. Our speakers have been handpicked because of their leadership, experience, knowledge and passion to make the world a better place via tourism. And we are proud to introduce you to them…
2014 Responsible Tourism Clinics & Forum Speakers
Tony ChartersPrincipal, Tony Charters and Associates
Tony has over 20 years experience in tourism planning, development and management in the public and private sectors. He was a founding director of Ecotourism Australia and has served continuously on the EA board since 1991. For many years he also served on the board and executive of The International Ecotourism Society. An environmental scientist and urban and regional planner by profession, Tony entered the tourism industry after a successful career in World Heritage Area and multi-tenure protected area management. He has worked variously as tourism operator, policy maker and administrator. As Principal of Tony Charters and Associates he provides strategic advice to leading industry operators and government on tourism industry planning, development and investment; destination development; and the sustainable management. Tony convenes the annual the Global Eco Asia-Pacific Conference. He has served since 2004 as a Finalist Judge in the Tourism for Tomorrow Awards hosted by the World Travel and Tourism Council, and as a Destination Stewardship Committee member for the Global Sustainable Tourism Council. In 2014 he was awarded an Order of Australia (AM) by the Governor-General for his services to the ecotourism industry, nature-based recreation and environmental education.
Jens Thraenhart was appointed by the tourism ministries of Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, and China (Yunnan and Guanxi) to head the Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office (MTCO) as its Executive Director. The Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office (MTCO) is an inter-governmental organization to promote the Mekong region as a single tourism destination, and foster responsible tourism development in the Greater Mekong Subregion. Jens Thraenhart is founder & president of Digital Innovation Asia (DIA), an initiative endorsed by the UNWTO, ASEAN, and PATA, as well as NTOs in Asia, building digital capacity from social to mobile in the travel and tourism industry in Asia Pacific, including innovative initiatives such as E-Tourism Asia, E-Tourism China, Blogger Match-Up, and Digital Aid Asia. He also founded China Travel Trends, as well as award-winning China digital marketing firm Dragon Trail in 2009, and has led marketing and Internet strategy teams with the Canadian Tourism Commission and Fairmont Hotels & Resorts, and has consulted for many global companies. Educated at Cornell University with a Masters of Management in Hospitality, Mr. Thraenhart was recognized as one of the travel industry’s top 100 rising stars by Travel Agent Magazine in 2003, was listed as one of HSMAI’s 25 Most Extraordinary Sales and Marketing Minds in Hospitality and Travel in 2004 and 2005, and named as one of the Top 20 Extraordinary Minds in European Travel and Hospitality in 2014. A UNWTO Affiliate Member, and Chair of PATA China, he founded the Annual China Responsible Tourism Forum & Awards in 2011. A dual citizen of Germany and Canada, Jens now lives between Beijing/China and Bangkok/Thailand.
Nicolas Dubrocard has been working on sustainability issues with hotels for the past decade. He has been the International Director of Green Key, an international eco-label implemented in 40+ countries, and prior to that he managed the Every Drop Counts Programme for the Travel Foundation in Morocco. Nicolas’s knowledge of sustainability management is further strengthened through his work auditing more than 100 eco-hotels in 25 countries. Based in Bangkok since 2013 he adapted Kuoni Water Management manual and tools for use in the Thai context, in addition to implementing the project in Thailand for partnering hotels. Most recently he moved to Malaysia and joined Wild Asia team.
She completed a Master’s degree in commerce and management and also a doctorate in tourism planning and destination marketing from Lincoln University, New Zealand. She has now been a tourism lecturer/trainer/coach/consultant for over 17 years. Her extensive researches in destination marketing and management resulted in innovative capacity building and learning tools to develop multi-stakeholders participatory approach for sustainable tourism development and community based tourism programs. She is trained to be professional presenter and Emcee which enhance professional abilities to provide engaged and stimulating workshops and trainings. She has been providing her tourism expertise for various government agencies involving in tourism development in Thailand, for example Tourism Authority of Thailand, Designated Areas for Sustainable Tourism Administration (Pubilc Organisation) Thailand, Tourism Council of Thailand. As a founder, an executive director and principle consultant at Perfect link Consulting Group “a consortium of experts”, her role is also to manage diverse knowledge “think tank”, specializing in capacity building programme, tourism marketing, branding, “Glocalisation” of culinary supply for sustainable procurement, organization development and sustainable tourism development and community participation in sustainable development.
Mike brings a wealth of experience in relationship marketing from business-to-business contexts across the private, public and development sector. Over the last 6 years Mike has helped organisations align digital technologies with their organisational goals to develop partnership synergies as well as analyse, engage and mobilize audiences. Before joining The Code in 2014, Mike worked for UNFPA and UNAIDS.
Her work with Planeterra involves evaluating the tourism supply chain and developing market-driven approaches to strengthened and promote community development initiatives, especially those that empower underserved women. With a background in Corporate Social Responsibility, Adrienne has worked with both grassroots NGOs and business-backed non-profits to develop and engage companies with best practices in regards to child and labour rights. Adrienne holds a Master’s in Environmental Applied Science and Management with a focus on environmental sustainability and remediation in communities in The Global South. Adrienne is a firm believer in learning through experience, travel, and those that inspire around you.
Rubén combines experience in management, business development and education from Europe, Latin America and South East Asia with a great passion for social issues and sustainable models of development. His interest in pragmatic effective solutions drove him to learn what is considered the most radically sustainable housing model: Earthship Biotecture. Ruben has undertaken retrofitting projects, and supported permaculture efforts as a lead builder and workshop facilitator. He was also one of the main coordinators of the Windship project, an effort born as response to the devastation of Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda), in the Philippines. Together with Wild Asia, Ruben has now created the Sustainable Building initiative that aims to inspire people to fulfil their basic needs in a comfortable way and in harmony with our planet.Sales and Marketing at Access China Tours
Daniel is an avid world traveler who has visited nearly 40 countries on six continents. He worked and traveled in Asia from 2010 through 2012. His three week backpacking trip in Myanmar inspired him to conduct extensive research in graduate school on the future of the country’s tourism industry as well as what sustainable tourism practices/initiatives are currently in place. Daniel holds a B.A. in Economics from the University of Missouri-Kansas City (UMKC) and a Master’s Degree in Tourism Management from Colorado State University (CSU). He recently began working in sales and marketing for Access China Tours, a boutique luxury tour operator headquartered in Vancouver that provides unforgettable once in a lifetime journeys to various Asian countries, for American and Canadian travelers. Daniel currently resides in Denver, Colorado where he enjoys exploring the great outdoors and traveling in his spare time.
A graduate in Economics (Honours) from the University of London in 1977 and has been in the tourism industry for the last thirty seven years. Albert Teo had travelled around the Asia Pacific countries as a keynote speaker on Ecotour and Ecolodge operations. In October 2006, he has been appointed to be the Adjunct Lecturer and in 2013 was conferred a Fellow by Edith Cowan University, Australia for his contribution to the ecotourism industry. His companies Borneo Eco Tours and Sukau Rainforest Lodge through his success formula continue to win international ecotourism awards. He is currently focusing his energy on developing social entrepreneurship through his community/ environment profit foundation under Borneo Ecotourism Solutions and Technologies (BEST) Society.
As the coordinator for the Global Alternative Tourism Network of the Asia and Pacific Alliance of YMCAs (APAY), he is involved with local Asian YMCAs and communities that are working to provide alternative and sustainable tourism that is community based, ecologically friendly and economically rewarding for the local hosting communities. The network is also concerned about impact of mass tourism on climate change and tries to promote responsible travel as a tool for ramification. As coordinator of GATN, he provides training and helps local YMCAs to host Alternative Tourism programs. He also facilitates the network of both hosting and sending parties. Beng Seng has 25 years experiences in working with and training young people in fields of faith and social awareness. The APAY is headquartered in Hong Kong and has members in 17 countries in Asia Pacific. The APAY is also related to the World Alliance of YMCAs, a global network.
Mr. Urubshurow is dedicated to promoting sustainable tourism in Mongolia while sharing the wonders of its cultural and natural treasures with travelers from around the world. After the peaceful revolution that brought democracy to Mongolia in 1990, its first Prime Minister recruited Mr. Urubshurow to advise on expanding accessibility to Western travelers which led to the establishment of Nomadic Expeditions. The company has replicated Mr. Urubshurow’s experiences exploring Mongolia’s ecology and culture for thousands of adventurers and Mr. Urubshurow has been named the “World’s Top Travel Specialist” for Mongolia by Condé Nast Traveler for the past 6 consecutive years. In 2002, Nomadic Expeditions opened the Three Camel Lodge, the first true eco-lodge accommodation in Mongolia and a pioneer is sustainable tourism best practices. National Geographic Traveler named the Three Camel Lodge one of the “25 World’s Best Lodges” in 2013. Mr. Urubshurow also served as a judge for the 2011- 2014 Tourism For Tomorrow Award of the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC). He is the recipient of the Order of Polar Star – the highest civilian award the government of Mongolia – and recently his company Nomadic Expeditions became one of the founding partner sponsors of the World Legacy Awards initiated by the National Geographic Society and ITB Berlin.