FuTuristica: Pressures and impacts of tourism on nature, society and infrastructure

Category: General

The Department of Sustainable Tourism Destination

at the UP Faculty of Tourism Studies Turistica

kindly invites you to the experts forum FuTuristica with the topic

Pressures and impacts of tourism on nature, society and infrastructure,

on Tuesday, 28 November 2017 at 1 PM at Turistica, Obala 11a, Portorož.


With this forum of experts, we are setting a starting point for a much-needed continuous debate on how tourism affects and changes the quality of life in Slovenia and how it should be managed in the future.

The reality is that the volume of tourism is increasing and so is the discourse on its positive and negative impacts. With the forum, we are providing an opportunity for relevant stakeholders to present, to professionals and the general public, empirically based facts on tourism impacts deriving from their personal or business environment. Only empirically supported facts on tourism are an appropriate tool for tourism development in Slovenia.

The forum will host:

  • Morakot Dita-Apichai (College of Innovation and Technology, Rajabhat Songklha University, Thailand)
  • Elias BJ Gislason (Icelandic Tourist Board, Iceland)
  • Anton Gosar, UP tenured professor
  • members of the Department of Sustainable Tourism Destination at UP FTŠ Turistica

and representatives of the following organisations:

Mercator d.d. Infrastruktura Bled Umanotera
Okolje Piran Rižanski vodovod Zavod za turizem Ljubljana
Snaga Ljubljana Park Škocjanske jame DARS


We kindly invite everyone with business and personal interests in tourism!


Guest lecturers from Japan

Next week Turistica will host two colleagues from Japan: dr. Kunio Shirahada from the JAIST Institute, who will visit us in the frame of the Erasmus+ programme, and dr. Hisashi Masuda from Kyoto University. They will both share their knowledge in different areas of expertise with our students.

Lectures content and presentation of both lecturers:

The lectures will be held in English language.

Kunio Shirahadaassociate professor in Japan Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (JAIST)| Received Ph.D at the University of Tokyo in 2009. His research interests include sustainability of service, neuro-marketing using Near-Infrared Spectroscopy (NIRS) technology, motivation management for service employees, and innovative organization design. | PRESENTATION: The trends of service innovation. Transformative service research: Knowledge and value co-creation for human well-being. Japanese cases: traditional Japanese services in tourism

Hisashi Masuda | program-Specific Senior Lecturer (Service Excellence), Graduate School of Management, Kyoto University | His research interest is related to new business design to develop and sustain not only simple services but also complex ones. He is focusing on how do we empower such directions by using current digital technologies. | PRESENTATION: A proposed conceptual model on collaboration between local and big businesses through tourism and Japanese cases related to this topic. The importance of such kinds of co-creative business model to adapt to today’s rapidly changing economy.

Lectures schedule:

Monday, 20 November 17, 12:00 – UP FTŠ Turistica, classroom 001

Kunio Shirahada | dr. Hisashi Masuda | Urška Križman Vižintin – IstraTerra| Mateja Hrvatin Kozlovič – Hiške Slovenske Istre 

Students of the course Innovation in Tourism MTP 3 | dr. Dejan Križaj

Tuesday, 21 November 17, 12:00 – UP FTŠ Turistica, classroom 001

Kunio Shirahada – Lectures for undergraduate Turistica students

Tuesday, 21 November 17, 16:00 – UP FTŠ Turistica, classroom 001

Kunio Shirahada – Lectures for postgraduate Turistica students

Friday, 24 November 17, 12:00 – Student Campus Ljubljana, classroom 2

Kunio Shirahada | dr. Hisashi Masuda | dr. Dejan Križaj
Turistica PhD students: Iztok Bončina – Space Tourism | Darija Cvikl – Forest Tourism | Dubravka Kalin – internal destination developemnt


Students visit the Ecological Olive Farm Gramona

Category: Culture Students

In the frame of the Sustainable Tourism course, taught by assist. prof. Simon Kerma, our Erasmus students visited the ecological olive farm Gramona in Seča, a pleasant location above the Sečovlje Salina Nature Park. A complementary activity of the farm is also boutique (eco)tourism, which is taken care of by Andy and Nina Froggatt. The students visited the olive and persimmon (kaki) farm, tried to harvest the indigenous Štorta olive (for jar storage) and learned about the correct way of tasting olive oil. They also tried other local/Istrian delights.

The pictures speak for themselves …


Foto: Daniela Alemeida de Fonseca in Sveinn Skorri Höskuldsson

Turistica student wins 3rd place at the European Young Chef Award

The European Young Chef Award is a competition promoted by the International Institute of Gastronomy, Culture, Art and Tourism (IGCAT) from Barcelona. Encouraged by assist. prof. Aleš Gačnik, who is also a member of the international IGCAT group of experts, Turistica’s student Filip Matjaž participated in this prominent European competition. Filip has been flourishing for several years as a creative young chef and as a member of the Slovenian Young Chef Team. He gained his cooking skills in their family restaurant Tomi in Portorož.

Filip Matjaž represented the Mediterranean Slovenia (Primorska region) with the dish Taste of the Slovenian Sea and won the excellent third place, and thus became a mentor for future young chefs and at the same time the IGCAT ambassador for the Primorska region. Under the guidance of prof. Aleš Gačnik, the latter is preparing to apply for the status of European Region of Gastronomy. The winner, Aisling Rock from Galway – West Ireland, European Region of Gastronomy 2018 impressed the panel with her dish: Mackerel, Pickle, Sheep Yoghurt. The silver went to the Finnish Kuopio, Region of Gastronomy 2020, with the dish Blueberry pie gone to forest prepared by Josi Polso.

The first day of the competition, the participants presented a traditional dish to the jury panel; however, the next day they upgrade it with a modern version of it. Filip’s story was inspired by the tradition of the Istrian winds, full of vegetables, which are a base for every “Brodet” (fish stew), accompanied with the delights that the Slovenian sea has to offer.

He presented the innovative Istrian Brodet on an enamel plate produced in Slovenia. He first arranged it with vegetables and a clam cake, and so presented the seabed and Istrian garden. He placed the cuttlefish on the cake as it swims just above the seabed. On the top, he added pieces of fish in a threadlike pastry with which he portrayed a fishnet full of fish. Next to it, he served a sauce of traditional Istrian Brodet in an enamel cup, which was once used as a ladle. A final touch for the innovative version of the Brodet was the scampi salt that was prepared out of scampi and salt from the Sečovlje saltpans. To prepare his dish Filip used only the best sea delights and completed it with organic vegetables, produced in the Slovenian Istriaorgana, the Vinakoper malvasia wine and extra virgin olive oil from the Morgan olive farm.

Filip’s culinary motto says that every dish should represent the region, history and people living there. The dish reflects the region’s gastronomic identity, which allows guests to feel the destination. Furthermore, this is the exact content of his dissertation, which he is preparing under the guidance of prof. Aleš Gačnik.

Photo: IGCAT archive


Turistica student to represent Slovenia at ASEM conference

Category: Interesting Students

Megan Božič, student at Turistica, was selected through a public call among thousands to participate at the 13th Foreign Ministers’ Meeting for member states of the Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF). This year the conference will be held between 15 and 20 November in Myanmar. She will deliver a speech on Tourism and Terrorism.

Slovenia became a member of the ASEF Foundation by joining the EU in 2004 and has been involved in their activities ever since. By bringing various current issues to light these activities contribute to political and academic dialogue.

In conjunction with the 13th Foreign Ministers’ Meeting, students will attend the 8th Model ASEM political simulation and step into the shoes of foreign ministers and thus have a unique chance to discuss and exchange perspectives on current political issues related to both continents. The slogan of this year’s conference is “Strengthening Partnership for Peace and Sustainable Development”. Through role-playing, research activities, case studies and practical training student will enforce their diplomacy and negotiation skills and consensus-building and public speaking abilities.

Megan Božič, student at Turistica

Megan Božič is a 3rd year student at Turistica (Tourism Enterprise Management programme). She has always been interested in international relations, diversity of world cultures, travelling and languages, and thus decided to study tourism. “I like working with people and I see tourism as a branch that offers a lot of employment possibilities to the youth, at home and abroad,” Megan said.

She will attend the conference within the thematic group “Joint Efforts in Combatting Terrorism” with a speech on Tourism and terrorism, which is quite a current topic if we relate to the events the world has been experiencing lately. She applied to the call with a rather critical eye and in hope of gaining an international experience that would enrich her on the personal and professional level.  “When I found out that I was selected and that I will represent Slovenia at the international conference in Asia, I was amazed. 4200 candidates applied from 51 states and among them 150 candidates were selected, including me. I am very proud to represent my country at this great international event and take this task as an exceptional honour. I expect to gain a lot of knowledge, get to know the country, have the opportunity to meet young diplomats from many foreign countries, test my skills in public speaking and particularly live an unforgettable experience, that in the future will most certainly improve my understanding of relations between countries,” Megan said about the great opportunity that awaits her.





MOOC “Tourism Management at World Heritage Sites”

We are pleased to announce that the enrolment to the MOOC “Tourism Management at World Heritage Sites”, offered by the Universities members of the UNESCO UNITWIN network “Culture, Tourism, Development” is now open! What a great opportunity!

The MOOC introduces tourism at UNESCO World Heritage Sites by covering Communication Technologies, Economy, Management and Planning, etc. It is directed to policy makers, site managers, students and people active in the tourism industry.

The course comprises 8 modules (one each week) and all materials will be available for 1 year. After successfully completing the course, you will receive a free course completion certificate.

assoc. prof. Aleksandra Brezovec

Turistica’s associate professor Aleksandra Brezovec is among the pedagogical team that will  spread their knowledge in tourism.

The MOOC is open for everyone, especially professions involved in tourism.

More information here.

Guest Lecturer: Allan Brodie

In the sphere of the GUEST UP project, Turistica is hosting the Senior Investigator from Historic England Allan Brodie.

The lectures will be held:

On Monday, 6 November 2017, from 14:00 to 16:00, classroom 001

Spas, Travel and the Origins of Tourism in Britain

This paper describes the origins of tourism in Britain and links it back to the tradition of pilgrimage. It also describes how in the 16th century spas began to be a key tourist destination, and continued to be popular through the 18th century.

On Tuesday, 7. 11. 2017, from 16:00 to 18:00, classroom 309

Heritage, Tourism and Leisure since 1945

This presentation will begin by outlining how Britain’s heritage is managed and how this is a culmination of centuries of travel to discover the country’s history. In the second part of the presentation, the story of the changing tourism and leisure market since 1945 will describe how Britain’s holiday habits have changed, particularly in response to foreign competition.

On Wednesday, 8. 11. 2017, from 16:00 to 18:00, unit Ljubljana – Classroom 2 – Pivovarniška 6

Seaside Holidays in Britain 1700-1945

Britain became the first country to embrace the seaside for health and recreation in the 18th century. This paper examines the origins of this new phenomenon traces and how an activity once limited to a handful of wealthy people, became a universal experience by the 20th century.

Investment is co-financed by the Republic of Slovenia and the European Union under the European Social Fund:

Extended deadline: co-financing of PhD studies

We hereby inform you that the application deadline for the public call for PhD studies co-financing in 2017 has been extended.

The new deadline is Wednesday, 25 October 2017.

The application forms are here.

Congratulations students!

Category: Sports Students

The landmark 20th autumnal sports and entertainment event “Čista desetka”, organised by the Primorska University Sport Association and Student Organisation of the University of Primorska was held in Koper on Wednesday 18 October 2017. Turistica’s students did a great job:

1st place in Bowling
1st place in the card game “Briškola”
1st and 2nd place in Ludo
2nd place in Darts (men)
2nd and 3rd place in Darts (women)
3rd and 4th place in Mini golf
4th place in Volleyball (mixed)

We thank and congratulate all students who participated as well as supporters in the crowd.

Photo: Student Council of Turistica 

Closing Event of the Research Project

On 22 September 2017 we held the wrap-up event of the project IDENTIFICATION, CLASSIFICATION AND POTENTIAL DEVELOPMENT OF SOCIAL TOURISM PRODUCTS IN SLOVENIA, ORIENTED TOWARDS SENIOR PROGRAMMES (Project V5-1512). The latter falls within the Targeted Research Projects, financed by the ARRS Slovenian Research Agency and by the Slovenian Ministry of Economic Development and Technology.

Tourism represents the field of assuring fundamental human rights to leisure, arising from the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights, bringing a variety of positive effects for individuals as well as for society as such. Sadly, this right is not accessible to everyone in modern society due to social disadvantages, a tight financial situation or other circumstances like poor health, mobility problems and various disabilities. Social tourism has evolved as an alternative to common/commercial forms of tourism, thus adjusting travel and holiday offers for disadvantaged social groups by paying special attention to their capabilities and limitations.

Care for different vulnerable groups, including seniors, mirrors the development level of modern society. The quality of life is reflected by happiness, security and fulfilment in different life aspects. A fifth of elderly Europeans expresses a lower level of satisfaction in life, two thirds only a medium-level (EUSTAT, 2015), and this is a concern. In Slovenia, the level of satisfaction is below the European average.

Only 49 % of Europeans, who are older than 65, are actively involved in travelling, which is substantially less than the other age groups (between 61 % and 71 %). 22 % of EU residents is older than 65, but they only represent the 18 % of all EU tourists. More than one third of Europeans who are 55 or more are not travelling, a weak fifth travels once a year. The main reasons are a tight financial situation (44 %) and health reasons (37 %). Thus, seniors are one among the four groups benefiting in social tourism (according to the CALYPSO definition the other three are the youth, families and the disabled).

Seniors (55 – 80 years old) make up a quarter of EU population and thus represent an important market potential for tourism. It is therefore an important part of the European society, that is apparently facing the problem of ensuring a quality life and the right to leisure, among which there are tourist activities. Slovenia is aware of this problematic and the opportunities arising in social tourism and is therefore on its path towards systematically providing travelling and holidays to disadvantaged groups. We are presenting the results of the project, which identified the possibilities and opportunities to develop effective forms of holidays and travelling, which can substantially improve the possibilities of seniors to engage in tourism and thus improve the quality of their lives (e.g. health, fulfilment, recreation, knowledge, socialisation, etc.).

On the other hand, social tourism brings numerous positive effects for society of social and economic nature (see below).

Table 1: Identified benefits of social tourism among senior population

Benefits for individuals Benefits for society
·         Higher level of satisfaction

·         Increase of independence

·         Better mental and physical health

·         Interruption of routine and changing of environment

·         Opportunity for socialising and meeting new people

·         Opportunity to learn through new experience and new environments

·         Relaxation and improvement of relations

·         Improvement of self-image and confidence

·         Reduction of social inequalities

·         Promotion of social inclusion

·         Improvement of quality of life in society

·         Improvement of social wellbeing

·         Increase in social cohesion

·         Fostering of economic growth

·         Reduction of seasonality impacts to business operations

·         Maintenance of the existing and creation of new employments

·         Facilitation of development of regions or tourist destinations


The project revealed that in Slovenia the older population is engaged in tourism in a much lower degree than other age groups. Based on the available data of the Statistical Office of the Republic of Slovenia, persons older than 65 represent only a good tenth of all travelling among Slovenians. They also spend much less than an average Slovenian traveller. The comparison between senior tourists (65 +) and young tourists (15 – 24 years old) reveals that seniors travel less and spend 30 % less than the youth. Many obstacles contribute to such a “travelling” image of the older population. By such a low level of capabilities and engagement in tourism the quality of life of seniors is deteriorating as well and at the same time other social fields are having its toll (e. g. medical system), as travelling has a direct positive effect on regeneration (mental and physical) of the organism and thus leads to less medical complications.

In Slovenia we know all four globally established models of social tourism:

  • Participatory model,
  • Inclusive model,
  • Adaptation model,
  • Stimulation model.

Nonetheless, another, probably unique, model of Social tourism, that emphasises seniors, is resulting in Slovenia:

  • Hybrid model, e. g. programmes of Pensioners’ associations, where associations in cooperation with travel agencies prepare adapted tourism arrangements for their members; i. e. arrangements with a special discount, a tailored content, adapted transportation, possibilities of payment by instalments, accompanying persons, and similar. Such arrangements are usually organised in low season. These are mainly domestic trips around Slovenia and the surrounding areas lasting 1 or more days and longer trips to health resorts and summer vacations. These programmes are intended (mainly) for members and arise from a cooperation with commercial operators, in the frame of long-term public-private partnerships.

Furthermore, social tourism programmes are tailored to the market and thus to the needs of the target consumers of social tourism. In spite of this there is still considerable room for manoeuvre to introduce to Slovenia the established models of social tourism.

The key outcomes of the project are:

  • Analysis of the situation and development potentials of social tourism in Slovenia;
  • Identification and classification of different Slovenian senior programmes of social tourism;
  • Study of existing national and foreign models of support mechanisms of social tourism;
  • Feasibility study of a web portal, which would connect supply with demand in the field of social tourism for seniors;
  • Formulate policies and measures in relation to the research of social tourism in Slovenia.

The key project proposals are:

  • Slovenia requires more developmental tourism initiatives for target consumers of social tourism;
  • More integration between the state, economy, non-profit sector/organisations and civil society, that connects target consumers of social tourism, will be necessary;
  • The initiative for registration and an easier access to information on tourism supply and demand for target consumers of social tourism is obvious;
  • Key information for all social tourism stakeholders must be included in the existing tourism commercial information and distribution channels;
  • It is essential to adopt consistent strategic guidelines of the state in the area of social tourism and thus to adapt legislative acts;
  • It is necessary to establish financial mechanisms for consumers and providers (e.g. voucher system or discounting system) and make sure that the latter is used solely for the purpose of travelling;
  • Other support systems for supply-demand in social tourism should be established;
  • A programme of integrated promotion and information to the public (economic sector, non-profit sector, state, civil society) regarding the problems, benefits and effects of social tourism in Slovenia, should be established.

The project has shown numerous benefits of promoting social forms of tourism, with emphasis on programmes for the older population and has linked key players in the field. It has proposed specific measures to promote the possibilities of seniors to engage in travelling more actively and thus genuinely enjoy their fundamental right. And the proposed measures also lead towards the establishment of a tourist offer that enables seniors to actively contribute to tourism, since it is one of the most important economic industries, and to solve the problem of seasonality and the related business challenges in the tourism sector.