Is tourism a blessing or a curse?

Thursday November 16, 2017 to Thursday January 11, 2018

Tourism is one of the sectors that is rapidly growing in the world today. Due to that, awareness about issues such as its potential negative effects on the natural and cultural environment as well as the local economies has been raised.

Prominent guest speakers are invited to Stenden University to share their highly valued knowledge with Tourism Management students in the lecture series “Tourism: Blessing or Curse”. By inviting the guest speakers to Stenden, our tourism expert Maaike Bergsma educates the students on the following controversies in tourism:


On 16th of November, filmmaker Steffi Posthumus will introduce her documentary “Doing good”. The documentary visualises the dilemmas surrounding volunteerism and identifies ethical aspects and contradicting perspectives in relation to orphanage tourism.

Nature-based tourism

On the 21st of November, the project manager of World Wildlife Fund, Jaap van der Waarde, will introduce the concept of nature-based tourism. He will give numerous examples of projects around the world where tourism is used as a tool for nature conservation.

Tourism and animal ethics

On the 24th of November, Simone Eckhardt (Stiching Spots) and Melvin Mak (TUI) will discuss the effects of our leisure and tourism activities on animals. Thereby, they will identify ethical aspects and contradicting perspectives in relation to use of wild animals in tourism.

Sex tourism

On the 28th of November, the project manager of ECPAT, Celine Verheijen, will deliver a guest lecture on sex tourism. The purpose of this lecture is to raise awareness to the complexities of sex tourism and to point out the related issues. She will also highlight what responsibilities travel industry could take in regard to this social problem.

Sustainable tourism

On the 5th of December, Emiel Martens, filmmaker and lecturer at the University of Amsterdam, will introduce his documentary “Welcome to the Smiling Coast”. He will raise a discussion about differential aspects of sustainable tourism in less developed countries.

Visitor pressure

On the 10th of January, our tourism experts Bernadett Papp and Albert Postma will introduce students to the problem of over-tourism and the impacts tourism has on a destination and its community. In addition to that, they will explain the role of stakeholders in managing visitor pressure and will identify potential strategies to deal with the related problems.

Slum tourism   

On the 11th of January, senior lecturer at NHTV Breda, Ko Koens, will deliver a guest lecture on slum tourism and will identify ethical aspects and contradicting perspectives of the slum tourism concept.

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