Tourism and well-being, sustainability and climate change. The relationship between these themes was at the heart of the first EuniWell summer school hosted by the Department of Economics and Management of the University of Florence from 28 June to 1 July. Over 150 students from different European nationalities participated in the initiative, of which 93 were from the universities of the EUniWell consortium.
The initiative is part of the joint research project “Advancing the understanding of tourism and wellness, drawing on the European biocultural heritage” funded by EUniWell, under the coordination of Linnaeus University (the University of Florence is a partner).
The four-day event was a stage for interdisciplinary reflection on these issues, as well as a training opportunity for students. The lectures were given by Lali Lindell of Linnaeus University and Francesco Fuso-Nerini of the KTH - Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm.
Lali Lindell introduced the theme of wellness in tourism, enriching her analysis with a review of the main trends emerging in recent years in response to the need for healthy, ecological, ethical and spiritual experiences. In the course of the lectures, the teacher illustrated the pillars on which the tourism of well-being should be based and highlighted good practices relating to different European contexts.
The theme of sustainability in the context of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) has been framed by Fuso Nerini. Based on these references, he focused on the aspects of climate change and, following on, the central role of alternative energy in pursuing the 2030 Agenda program. Finally, he examined the contribution that a discipline like AI could make to this scenario.
During the Summer School, discussions focused on the meaning of the expression “wellness tourism” with the aim of defining a common denominator among the realities that are part of the network. The research interests that could be the basis of new projects to be submitted for European funding were also considered. The students who took part in the initiative hosted by Unifi will be involved in a collaboration for the drafting of the next report on good practice in wellness tourism, by Linnaeus University.