Dr. Myriam Jansen-Verbeke’s
Dr. Myriam Jansen-Verbeke’s life started in the heart of the historic city of Bruges, Belgium, now a star on the Unesco World Heritage list. This was my omen leading to an academic career in urban planning and conservation, with the challenges of managing the process of tourismification of cultural landscapes becoming a priority. My path started in Leuven and led to the University of Nijmegen, where I got involved in policy supporting fieldwork in historic cities. In 1993, I occupied an endowed chair in Tourism Management at the Erasmus University Rotterdam, the Netherlands, moving later to University of Leuven, to finally become Professor Emerita. As a member of the International Academy for the Study of Tourism, doors were opened for networking. The focus gradually shifted to heritage and tourism synergies and conflicts in various geographical, cultural, and political settings.
Dr. Myriam Jansen-Verbeke
The Catholic University of Leuven, Belgium
Branding Cultural Destinations: Synergy between Tangible and Intangible Heritage
An awareness about the tourism potential of cultural resources has existed, yet the global growth in the last decennia creates new challenges. Cultural values are selectively given to the past, mainly to re-create cultural identies. Heritage resources are now used as a USP in branding places. Heritagezation leads to discussions about ownership of resources, to discrepancy in values and sustainable authenticity. Little is known about the long term impacts of tourism, on unique and vulnerable landscapes, buildings and "traditions of living heritage”. The challenge for destination managers/marketeers is to understand and anticipate the dynamics of interlinked processes regarding the construction of heritagescapes and competitive tourismscapes. There is no receipe for a succesful tourism development, but there are management models applicable in the specific social, cultural, political, and spatial contexts. Our focus will be on the application a management model for cultural destinations.
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