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World Bank Group Tourism Forum 2015: Driving Development Through Tourism
December 8-9, 2015World Bank Group HQ, Washington, D.C.

Tourism is a powerful tool for reducing poverty, boosting economic growth, building social progress and ensuring peace. How can the World Bank Group, country clients and business leaders work together to ensure that tourism contributes to the World Bank Group's twin goals?

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The World Bank Group has a substantial portfolio of lending, technical assistance and investments in the tourism sector. Sustainable tourism is increasingly being recognized as a powerful tool for poverty alleviation, economic growth, sustainable development, social inclusion, and as an effective instrument for peace building. Tourism is one sector in which the developing world has a distinct advantage, possessing unique assets that can be actively leveraged (i.e. culture, heritage, environment, communities).  But there is much more that still needs to be done.  As market share shifts more and more to the developing world, how can our clients best capitalize on sustainable growth while ensuring that those most in need benefit the most?

This Forum brings together global thought leaders and proven achievers to identify new ways to channel growth while addressing the challenges and opportunities of developing the tourism sector in emerging economies.  The Forum will focus on how tourism can contribute to the twin goals of poverty reduction and shared prosperity. It will also address ways in which the World Bank Group, global leaders, and policy makers can work together to deliver on this agenda.

The event will be held at the World Bank Headquarters and broadcast globally online.    

Day 1: Dec 8, 2015

0800 - 0855Breakfast  & Coffee (MC Preston Auditorium - 1818 H St NW, Washington, D.C.)

0900 – 0920 - Opening Keynote: – Tourism & the Twin Goals

  • Welcome and Keynote by Dr. Kim on the WBG’s renewed approach to tourism and the link to the Twin Goals

Host: Mr. Phillip Jeremy Hay, Communications Adviser, World Bank Group
Keynote: Dr. Jim Yong Kim, President, World Bank Group
 

0920 – 1020 - Plenary Session 1: Tourism for Development

How can countries and regions harness tourism as a powerful tool to promote development and inclusion in emerging economies? How can the benefits of tourism be channeled those that need it most? How can the global development community & the World Bank Group play a better role?

Moderator:
Ms. Maggie Lake, Anchor/Correspondent, CNN


Panelists:

  • Ms. Sandra Howard, Vice-Minister for Tourism, Colombia 
  • Mr. Christopher J. Nassetta, President & Chief Executive Officer, Hilton Worldwide
  • Ms. Aireen Omar, CEO, AirAsia Berhad
  • Mr. Taleb Rifai, Secretary General, UNWTO
1020 - 1040 - Coffee Break
 
1040 – 1140 - Plenary Session 2: Pathways to Growth

How can developing country destinations capture their share of global tourism? What destinations stand out as models to follow? Where will tourism growth come from in the future? What experiences are being sought by travelers? What are the key investments needed to support growth?
 
Moderator:
Ms. Anabel Gonzalez, Senior Director, Trade & Competitiveness Global Practice, World Bank Group
 
Panelists:
  • Ms. Marta Blanco, Director General of Turespaña, Spain 
  • Mr. Francisco Eduardo Bonifaz R., Minister for Tourism, Guatemala
  • Mr. Ramon Jimenez, Secretary of Tourism, Philippines
  • Ms. Helen Marano, Vice President for Industry, WTTC
1140 – 1245 - Plenary Session 3: Tourism’s Sustainability & Inclusion

How can the drive for growth be balanced with protection for the environment, flora and fauna, cultural heritage and resource use? How have recent trends in greening tourism been implemented and what remains to be done? How can tourism better engage and integrate communities within and around destinations?
 
Moderator:
Ms. Paula Caballero, Senior Director Environment & Natural Resources, World Bank Group
 
Panelists:
  • Mr. Mauricio Ventura Aragon, Minister for Tourism, Costa Rica
  • Ms. Lynn Cutter, Executive Vice President, National Geographic Travel
  • Mr. John Scanlon, Secretary General, CITES
1245 – 1345 - Lunch 
 
1345 –1445 - Plenary Session 4: Growing the Business of Tourism

What makes a country or destination successful at the business of tourism? What types of legal frameworks and regulatory regimes need to be in place to attract, sustain and responsibly grow tourism? What are the elements to a successful tourism strategy? How does the new era of big data and online information affect destination development and growth?
 
Moderator:
Mr. Sergio Pimenta, Director, Manufacturing Agribusiness & Services, IFC
 
Panelists:
  • Mr. Boubacar Djibo, Director, Air Transport Bureau, International Civil Aviation Organization 
  • Ms. Isabel Hill, US Office of Travel and Tourism Industries, U.S. Government
  • Mr. John McCarthy, Ex-Director, FONATUR, Mexico
  • Mr. Steven Paganelli, Head of Destination Marketing, Americas, TripAdvisor
1445 - 1545 - Plenary Session 5: Leveraging the Cultural & Heritage Assets of Tourism

Culture and heritage have been drivers of travel for millennia, how are they being effectively leveraged today? How do destinations value and leverage culture and heritage as draws for tourism while ensuring preservation for generations to come? Are there any existing and up-and-coming destinations that have done a good job of maintaining this balance?
 
Moderator: Ms. Anna Bjerde, Director, Strategy and Operations Sustainable Development Vice Presidency, WBG
Panelists:
  • Ms. Keti Bochorrishvili, Deputy Minister of Economy & Sustainable Development, Georgia
  • Mr. Nabil Sami Itani, Council of Development and Reconstruction, Lebanon
  • Mr. Guido Licciardi, Senior Urban Specialist, World Bank Group
  • Mr. You Ji, Urban Specialist, East Asia and Pacific Region, World Bank Group
1545 - 1600 - Coffee
 
1600 - 1700 - Plenary Session 6: Harnessing the Potential of Nature-based Tourism for Growth and Poverty Reduction
What are the many facets of nature-based tourism and how can it serve as an engine of growth for developing countries? What are the types of policies, projects, and partnerships that are needed to ensure that the potential of nature-based tourism is harnessed for economic growth and poverty reduction?
 

Moderator: Ms. Magda Lovei, Practice Manager, Environment Global Practice, World Bank Group
Panelists:

  • Mr. Mauricio Ventura Aragon, Minister for Tourism, Costa Rica 
  • Mr. Costas Christ, Adviser, National Geographic Unique Lodges & Sustainability Program 
  • Dr. Yehya Khaled, Director General, Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature, Jordan
  • Mr. George Wambura, Executive Secretary, Authorized Association Consortium (AAC), Tanzania

1700 - 1930 - Reception & Closing Day 1 

 

Day 2: Dec 9, 2015

0800 - 0900 - Breakfast & Coffee (IFC Auditorium - 2121 Pennsylvania Ave NW, Washington, D.C.)

0900 –1000 - Plenary Session 8: Confronting Crises and Reinforcing Resilience

How do natural, political and health crises affect tourism growth? How can countries prepare for, deliver during and recover from crises? What do recent country experiences tell us about resilience and recovery?

Moderator:  Ms. Anita Mendiratta, Founder & Managing Director, CACHET Consulting

Panelists:

  • Ms. Sandra Howard, Vice-Minister for Tourism, Colombia  
  • Mr. Nabil Sami Itani, Council of Development and Reconstruction, Lebanon
  • Mr. Shannon Stowell, President, Adventure Travel Trade Association
  • Mr. Hisham Zaazou, Minister for Tourism, Egypt (via VC)

1000 –1100 Plenary Session 9: Skills for Growth & Inclusion (Special Focus: Women & Youth)

Is there a skills gap in tourism? How will the labor force in many developing countries meet the demand and potential of the tourism sector? What are the facts and fiction on tourism related skills and employment? How do training institutions & private sector driven capacity building ensure tourism delivers jobs and incomes to the communities?

Moderator: Ms. Louise Twinning Ward, CEO, Sustainable Travel International 

Panelists:

  • Mr. William S. Reese,  President and CEO, International Youth Foundation
  • Ms. Jennifer Silberman, Vice President, Corporate Responsibility, Hilton Worldwide
  • Ms. Helen Marano, Vice President for Industry, WTTC

1100 - 1115 - Coffee

1115 - 1215 - Plenary Session 10: Poverty Reduction & the Theory of Change for Tourism Driven Development

What have we learned about the way tourism impacts poverty? What approaches have proven successful? How can we better link tourism to development goals? What does the research tell us? Where are the gaps in research and analytics that need to be filled? 

Moderator:  Ms. Cecile Fruman, Director, Trade & Competitiveness Global Practice, World Bank Group

Panelists:

  • Ms. Keti Bochorrishvili, Deputy Minister of Economy & Sustainable Development, Georgia
  • Ms. Deepa Chakrapani, Head of IFC's Evaluation & Analytics Program, IFC, World Bank Group
  • Mr. George Wambura, Executive Secretary, Authorized Association Consortium (AAC), Tanzania

1215 –1315 - Plenary Session 11: Destinations that Deliver: Destination Management Organizations

Can you ever have too much tourism? Who decides what is best for a destination, and how is that decision made? How can tourism development be managed by those closest to the destination; balancing the needs of visitors, local residents, businesses and the environment?

Moderator:  Ms. Elizabeth Becker, Award Winning Author & Journalist

Panelists:

  • Ms. Gabriella Crescini,  Head Client & Partner Relationships, Swiss Contact (by VC)
  • Mr. Cillian Murphy, Chairperson, Loop Head Tourism Ireland, Ireland
  • Mr. Miguel Pena, Senior Sustainability Analyst, Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.
  • Mr. Brian Said, Executive Director, Discover Philadelphia

Closing & Lunch

 

  • Mauricio Ventura Aragon

    Minister for Tourism, Costa Rica
  • Elizabeth Becker

    Award Winning Author and Journalist
  • Anna Bjerde

    Director, Strategy & Operations, Sustainable Development Vice Presidency, World Bank Group
  • Marta Blanco

    Director-General, Turespaña
  • Keti Bochorrishvili

    Deputy Minister of Economy & Sustainable Development, Georgia
  • Francisco Eduardo Bonifaz R.

    Minister for Tourism, Guatemala
  • Paula Caballero

    Senior Director, Environment & Natural Resources, World Bank Group
  • Deepa Chakrapani

    Head IFC’s Evaluation & Analytics Program, IFC, World Bank Group
  • Costas Christ

    Adviser, National Geographic Unique Lodges & Sustainability Program
  • Gabriella Crescini

    Head of Client & Partner Relationships, Swiss Contact
  • Lynn Cutter

    Executive Vice President, Travel and Licensing, National Geographic Travel
  • Boubacar Djibo

    Director, Air Transport Bureau, International Civil Aviation Organization
  • Cecile Fruman

    Director, Trade & Competitiveness Global Practice, World Bank Group
  • Anabel Gonzalez

    Senior Director, Trade & Competitiveness, World Bank Group
  • Phil Hay

    Communications Adviser, World Bank Group
  • Isabel Hill

    U.S. Office of Travel and Tourism Industries, U.S. Government
  • Sandra Howard

    Vice-Minister of Tourism, Colombia
  • Nabil Sami Itani

    Council of Development and Reconstruction, Lebanon
  • You Ji

    Urban Specialist, East Asia Pacific region, World Bank Group
  • Ramon Jimenez

    Secretary of Tourism, Philippines
  • Yehya Khaled

    Director General, Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature, Jordan
  • Jim Yong Kim

    President, World Bank Group
  • Maggie Lake

    Anchor/Correspondent, CNN
  • Guido Licciardi

    Senior Urban Specialist, World Bank Group
  • Magda Lovei

    Practice Manager, Environment & Natural Resources Global Practice, World Bank Group
  • Helen Marano

    Vice President for Industry, WTTC
  • John McCarthy

    Ex-Director, FONATUR, Mexico
  • Anita Mendiratta

    Founder & Managing Director, CACHET Consulting
  • Cillian Murphy

    Chairperson, Loop Head Tourism Ireland, Ireland
  • Christopher J. Nassetta

    President & CEO, Hilton Worldwide
  • Aireen Omar

    CEO, Air Asia
  • Steven Paganelli

    Head of Destination Marketing, Americas, TripAdvisor
  • Miguel Pena

    Senior Sustainability Analyst, Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.
  • Sergio Pimenta

    Director, Manufacturing Agribusiness & Services, IFC
  • William S. Reese

    President and CEO, International Youth Foundation
  • Taleb Rifai

    Secretary-General, UNWTO
  • Brian Said

    Executive Director, Discover Philadelphia
  • John Scanlon

    Secretary General, Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora
  • Jennifer Silberman

    Vice President, Corporate Responsibility, Hilton Worldwide
  • Shannon Stowell

    President, Adventure Travel Trade Association
  • George Wambura

    Executive Secretary, Authorized Association Consortium (AAC), Tanzania
  • Louise Twinning Ward

    CEO, Sustainable Travel International
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