Tourism Research for CEDARS
Tourism Research for Community Economic Development and Rural Sustainability (CEDARS)
British Columbia is a national leader of tourism innovation having 53 out of 205 of Destination Canada’s ‘Canadian Signature Experiences’, the vast majority of which are rural BC innovations. This presents a unique opportunity for linking tourism and rural sustainability. Tourism for Community Economic Development and Rural Sustainability (CEDARS) is a long-term research program which engages with a broad group of tourism stakeholders from across rural British Columbia to co-create sustainable tourism development. This program supports policy-making for a diverse BC rural tourism ecosystem which ultimately enables resilient rural communities.
The program has three central objectives:
1. assist regional partners in developing tourism for sustainable rural development;
2. engage in capacity building with the future leaders of BC tourism, and;
3. create a long-term alliance of BC rural tourism researchers for the benefit of BC communities.
This program examines a broad selection of cases from across rural British Columbia to gain a deeper understanding of how these communities have capitalized on the attractiveness of place to establish a more resilient local economy. In collaboration with a network of research colleagues across the province research will be developed with local community partners and students to co-create a state of the art knowledge environment for tourism and sustainable rural development in BC and to mobilize that knowledge across the BCRIC’s provincial, national and global networks.
Ongoing Research Projects
There is a growing interest in 'Creative Tourism' - activities that occur at the nexus of creative economies and tourism. Our research looks at small-towns in BC, such as Ashcroft (pictured) and Fernie to see how they unify arts, culture, and tourism for sustainable local development.
Working with Indigenous Tourism BC we help infuse innovation in community-led tourism developments and by sharing leading examples and best practices across communities we also help illustrate innovation in BC's growing and important Indigenous tourism sector.
Providing an overview of rural resilience - and tourism's place in supporting it - our research takes a province-wide view of rural resilience through tourism across British Columbia. We categorise sustainable tourism activities in all six tourism regions of BC and share the knowledge gained with interested communities.