Resilience Council Activities 2020/21
The Resilience Council is excited to share our list of projects, current and ongoing. It is through these types of projects we are demonstrating our goal to provide a platform for public private sector interaction towards long term resiliency.
- Global Tourism Resilience & Crisis Management Centre
- African Tourism Board (ATB March 2020 – Ongoing)
- Project Destination Safe (February 2020-2023)
- Project TSS (June 2020 – 2022)
- Evora Forum (November 5-6, 2020)
- In Depth Country Summits
- Virtual Industry Discussions (thought leadership activities delivered throughout 2020)
The GTRCMC in Jamaica was created by Minister Bartlett of Jamaica in response to the urgent need he bore witness to during the 2016 Resilience Council Summit. Launched as the International Travel Crisis Management Summit, now the Resilience Council, the agenda highlighted the inability of the travel and tourism to rebound rapidly and effectively from crises. Speakers detailed the lack of crisis management planning and the need to share ideas to improve preparedness and resilience. In 2017, Minister Bartlett opened the first Centre in Jamaica in conjunction with the University of the West Indies. In 2019, the second Centre was opened in Kenya in conjunction with Kenyatta University. The Resilience Council supports the activities of the Centres through knowledge sharing, networking, data exchange, global media coverage and marketing.
African Tourism Board (ATB March 2020 – Ongoing)
The non-profit organisation ATB approached the Council for assistance in membership development, strategic planning and effective organisation management. Operating now as its Strategic Advisor on a pro-bono basis, we have developed a series of activities that are beginning to cement its reputation as a valuable global player and a major influence on the continent. Through chairing the Safety and Security Committee, we have introduced important players on free trade and the movement of people and goods across the continent, AfroChampions who will be signing a MOU before the end of 2020. Furthermore, we have created a monthly Ministerial Roundtable, with Ministers of Tourism invited to speak together with ATB representatives and discuss their opportunities and challenges. Each country has a follow-up meeting for a deeper dive and the identification of how the ATB can specifically support the ministry’s activities. Media coverage and networking for brand and reputation development is ongoing.
Project Destination Safe (February 2020-2023)
An outstanding example of a public-private partnership developed by the Council in conjunction with the government of Jamaica and the private sector. The Council conceived the idea and has ushered it through to implementation. Funds earned from this project will support tourism activities on the island, minimise the burden on the local healthcare system and ensure tourism businesses will survive while providing peace of mind to travellers.
Jamaica will be the first country to implement a nationwide, comprehensive pandemic safety response programme. Visitors and the community will be better prepared and protected because of the co-operative arrangement we are establishing with the government, a leading travel crisis management provider and travel health insurance firms.
Visitors to Jamaica will pay a mandatory fee and automatically receive a broad set of services designed to minimize the effects of COVID-19 in the event of an infection, and provide mitigation and remediation assistance by implementing guidelines from the leading health and medical authorities. The fee will offset the country’s commitments to provide the additional services related to the programme.
If a COVID-19 or other emergency medical situation arises, government officials have partnered with Global Rescue, the world’s only integrated travel risk and crisis response provider, to immediately address the situation. The project will be replicated in other destinations as an ongoing Resilience Council initiative.
Project TTS (June 2020 – June 2022)
With this project, the Council recognised the need early on to facilitate introductions and share this alternative to the PCS testing Covid-19 protocol. As the world learns about the different types of testing and the importance of speedy accurate results, we are pleased to have identified an important solution which has high efficacy and is affordable without the need for elaborate laboratory equipment. This is particularly helpful for destinations, events, academic environments and hotels. Perhaps with the ease of this solution, travel can return sooner than predicted.
The Loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) test is a single-tube technique for the amplification of DNA, which delivers results in less than 40 minutes. It is more accurate than the Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test and can be conducted at an airport without the need for a laboratory.
TSS has taken the LAMP testing a step further by integrating the results into iWarrant, a secure, smartphone- based, immutable application, providing a digital certificate to be used through check-in, security, duty free and boarding.
The Resilience Council works with TSS to bring together public and private sector entities that can benefit from the programme. Awareness of the system is generated through speaking engagements, publicity and both on and offline articles. The Council’s key contribution is through facilitating global networking.
Evora Forum (November 5-6, 2020)
This collaboration between the Portuguese Board of Tourism and Eventiz, a French media company, is to establish a “mini Davos” for the travel and tourism sector. The concept is to identify issues and then, through discussion, develop practices that attendees can sign up to and implement throughout the following year. The Resilience Council worked with the parties to develop the agenda, identify global leaders who can speak and moderators who can ensure tangible actions at the end of the event. The theme is sustainability; topics cover the environment, climate change, shared economy, economics of the industry, historic and cultural product development, share of wallet, indigenous populations, NGO collaboration and public private partnership development.
The Council also delivers marketing, PR, organization of activities, committees etc. and delivers sponsorship opportunities. Attendance is free so sponsorship is required to complement the funding offered by the Portuguese government. 100+ speakers participate with both online and offline attendees, all are C-level decision makers. We have envisioned the event to be annual, with 2020 as the inaugural year.
In Depth Country Summits
In the past two years, the Council has held country-specific summits at the request of governments such as Jordan, Nepal and South Africa. Due to Covid-19 these activities have been curtailed but an event in Ras al Khaimah is scheduled for 2021.
The Council relishes these opportunities to do a deep dive into the travel sector of specific countries. Depending on the needs of the country the Council focuses internally or looks to develop the country’s brand externally, or sometimes both. Themes explored include:
Internal: share of wallet, trade association effectiveness, product development, historic and cultural representation, local inclusion, environmental focus, economic opportunity, training, entrepreneurship, growth, GDP contribution, government support, NGO interaction and communications.
External: Which markets are most profitable; which sectors need bolstering; what messaging is successful; which medium should be focused on; new markets to address; profitability; bi-lateral agreements.
Virtual Industry Discussions (thought leadership activities delivered throughout 2020)
March –ITB, the largest travel industry gathering in the world, was forced to cancel due to the pandemic. The Council was quick to step in at the request of the organisers to provide one of the first online sessions where industry leaders shared their concerns about the unfolding situation.
May – The Resilience Council produced a full-day virtual event with over 65 speakers addressing aspects of the response and status of Covid-19. Representatives from all aspects of the global travel community came together to discuss lessons learned and plans moving forward. It is always heartening to see leaders sharing their ideas and other adopting new perspectives. These sessions were viewed by more than 1,500 travel decision makers.
June – Reed Exhibitions was forced to cancel Arabian Travel Market, an annual event attracting thousands from the travel sector in the Middle East region. The Council created two online sessions to help the organisers transition their content from face-to-face to online.
July – FINN Partners, a global PR firm working with the Resilience Council, partnered with the Council to organise a full day, virtual event on communications. Sessions were focused by geographic areas of the planet with speakers from each continent discussing the approach to communications in time of emergency.
August – In partnership with the Global Tourism Resilience Crisis Management Centre in Jamaica, the Council facilitated the Edmund Bartlett Lecture Series. The August session addressed geopolitical issues affecting the tourism industry as a result of Covid-19.