Interested in the role of transdisciplinarity and computational social sciences in tourist studies programs? Then join the dTS project at the upcoming CloudEARTH conference at FHBurgenland from May 18th – 19th 2022 in Eisenstadt, Austria. More details can be found here: https://conference.cloudearthi.com
Data-driven Tourism for Sustainability: The Role of Transdisciplinarity and Computational Social Sciences in Tourist Studies Programs
Thomas J. Lampoltshammer, Stefanie Wallinger, and Johannes Scholz
Climate change and the current COVID-19 pandemic have demonstrated how sensitively the tourism ecosystem reacts to disruptive influences and events. To increase resilience towards disruptive (environmental) factors, technology and digitalization need to be embraced from a holistic perspective to foster sustainability throughout regional, national, and European strategies. With the practical application of these technologies, Austria and its regions have the potential to position themselves on a national and international level as an innovative and sustainable destination. In addition, via the use of data-driven innovation, the tourism sector can increase resilience concerning the before-mentioned disruptive forces, as these innovations and underlying technologies increase flexibility and adaptive capacity to mitigate and conquer impacts on business models and the overall ecosystem. That being said, this requires not only the in-depth knowledge from the tourism domain itself from a practitioners’ perspective, but also requires a solid foundation concerning the application of technologies, as well as their potential unintended side-effects. This in turn challenges existing curricula in the domain of tourist studies to cover both worlds. This contribution thus introduces the dTS (data-driven Tourism for Sustainability) project and how the combination of artificial intelligence (AI) and agent-based modeling/simulation can contribute to resilient and sustainable regional tourism in Austria on the example of visitor flow control. Based on this example project, emerging topics of computational social sciences (CSS) in the tourism domain in the context of the development of tourist studies programs are presented.