Announcement for the 2020 Academic Symposium on Tourism Transformations

The Japanese Society for Geographical Sciences will hold the 2020 academic symposium as follows. We would like to invite you to join us. The presentations and discussions will be in English.

Theme: Tourism Transformations: Resilient Islands and Revitalized Communities

Date: November 28, 2020 (Sat) 11:50-17:30 Japan Standard Time (JST),  (GMT+9)

How to participate: In-person or zoom. (see below for the information on how to apply)

Venue: Hiroshima University Central Library Hall (1-2-2 Kagamiyama, Higashihiroshima City)

Participation fee: Free

Organizers: Carolin Funck, Rie Usui (Hiroshima University, Japan), Alan A. Lew (Northern Arizona University, USA), Joseph M. Cheer (Wakayama University)

Objectives of the symposium:

This symposium examines the relationship between tourism and the resilience and revitalization of island environments and island communities. 

Islands command a strong position in tourism due to their special environmental and cultural appeal. However, they are also vulnerable due to their isolation from large continental resources and connections. When global and regional economies and social conditions are healthy, tourism tends to be strong and supportive of island-based tourism economies. Under such conditions, island communities may feel a sense of revitalization and strong resilience. But when regional and global conditions are weak, for whatever reason, island tourism economies will often be among the first to suffer, thereby coming to realize their resilience challenges as they seek revitalization.

The COVID-19 pandemic has, in many ways, made the entire planet earth an island of shared challenges. How the planet responds to, and recovers from, this crisis has lessons for how smaller island environments and communities can better manage their limitations and opportunities. This symposium will draw upon examples from Japan and other Asian countries to examine how island tourism and tourism communities have been affected by, responded to, and ultimately been transformed by significant changes – global ones such as the COVID-19 pandemic or local and regional changes.  

The symposium will contribute to the understanding of the multiple links between tourism and islands - how tourism on small islands might adjust to unfolding crises, how tourism can act as a tool for revitalizing small island communities and how small islands should adjust to changing tourism and travel dynamics.

How to apply: If you would like to participate, please copy and paste the following application format, and send an e-mail to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (Japanese Society for Geographical Sciences). Mail title: “Tourism Symposium Nov. 28”. Participants must apply in advance. You will receive a confirmation email after applying. 

Application format

-------------------------------- Copy and paste the following into the body of the email

I request to participate in the symposium of Japanese Society for Geographical Sciences on November 28th, 2020.

・Your preferred participation option:  in-person or zoom (Please select one by deleting the other)

  • Full name  ______________________________
  • Residential address   ______________________________

-----------------------------------End of copy and paste


  • The application deadline is at the end of October.
  • Please send one application per person.
  • The maximum number of participants for zoom is 300 including the presenters. We accept on a first-come, first-served basis. 
  • We restrict the participants who wish to come to the venue exclusively to those who live in Hiroshima prefecture or Chūgoku region.
  • To reduce the risk of COVID-19 infection, we will limit the number of in-person participants to about 50 at the venue, which is half the maximum capacity.
  • Depending on the COVID-19 situation and the emergency level of the university, we might switch to Zoom entirely. Slots for in-person participants will be reserved for zoom participation. 

Contact address

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