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Wageningen University

Sustainable Tourism: Rethinking the future

Wageningen University via edX


Sustainable tourism development put into practice
In this course you will be teamed up and challenged to apply your argumentation skills to implement insights from various tourism disciplines and different social science perspectives to current tourism developments. For example:

Sociology: how is tourism organised (laws/regulations)?
Psychology: what effects how tourists experience tourism (COVID 19?!)
Geography: what does tourism development mean for a particular location?

Learn of and work on promising and new tourism developments, such as Van Life and voluntourism and other inspiring changes observed in the tourism industry. Recognize and co-create future narratives as a tool to compose new business cases and/or project proposals in your professional context. Implement these perspectives to a tourism practice of your choice, and share your insights through regular feedback with experts and other participants in this course.

Debates on sustainable tourism development
Sustainable alternatives can only become real if we allow for an open space for continuous discussion and representation of new ideas. That's why this MOOC offers a platform for ongoing discussions of tourism developments, where you are encouraged to engage in meaningful debates on these innovative developments as they appear, during the course as well as after completion.

The effects of Corona virus on the tourism industry
There is no doubt that tourism has been greatly affected by the Corona pandemic. With the upcoming attempt to rebound post-Corona, the industry faces a choice: back to business-as-usual or re-invention toward more sustainable practices, such as ecotourism? But also, how has Corona effected tourists? We will discuss all related questions throughout our tourism courses.

For whom
Whether you work in tourism, are a tourism related business owner or a fervent traveller, join us for this MOOC as we apply science to a broad array types of tourism. Then come up with your very own to help drive sustainability in tourism. Subscribe now!

Professional Certificate Programme

This online course is part of the Professional Certificate Programme Tourism in Transition: Exploring a Sustainable Future, along with the MOOCs: Sustainable Tourism: Society & Environmental Aspects and Tourism and Climate Change.


Module 1: Tourism Studies and Development

In module 1, you will learn more about the cases from which we will depart in this course. Each case represents a unique setting in which tourism develops one way or another. As situational these cases appear, they may well connect with other practices that you are familiar with or have a special interest in. It is also possible to come up with your own case and find collaborators (other learners) who wish to join you in the exploration of this case. We very much welcome your creativity in outlining a case that is of interest to you!

If you are eager to move forward and engage in a dialogue on these cases, you must enrol as a verified learner. As a verified learner, you are given access to your own team environment but also to previous ideas developed in this course. You can work with other international team members on a case of your choice, share inspiring solutions to problems addressed, participate in (optional) fieldwork and engage in analyses corresponding to modules 2-4.

Module 2: Psychology of Tourism

In module 2, you will get an overview of the psychology of tourism and explain tourist experiences before, during and after holiday trips.

Module 3: Sociology of Tourism

In module 3, you will get an overview of the sociology of tourism, and learn how to explore the policy environment of any tourism case.

Module 4: Geography of Tourism

In module 4, you will get an overview of the geography of tourism, and learn how to explore the politics of place making and objects in tourism contexts.

Wrapping Up and Looking Forward

In module 5, we will invite you and your team members to present your group findings to all learners of this course. As such, you can possibly become inspired with the work of other learners in this course and gain final feedback to improve your final team vision.

Finally, verified learners can complete this course by filing a personal report in which you reflect on the team process and outcomes individually.

Taught by

Arjaan Pellis and Jonas Skutka


4.1 rating, based on 59 Class Central reviews

Start your review of Sustainable Tourism: Rethinking the future

  • Anonymous
    This course is very good because it helps learners to re-thinking some of the emerging tourism cases like Psychology, Sociology and Geography etc. The Psychology is foremost concerned with perceptions, motivations, feelings or emotions. Sociology of tourism also studies humans as social beings, how they live together in various societies. Tourism geography explores the interactions amongst tourists, visitors and inhabitants in and with places. In the nutshell, Learners also learn from each other's expertise and experiences.
  • Anonymous
    I really enjoyed joining this course because not only i can get the knowledge and better understanding on how to initiate and solving problem in sustainability tourism but also I gain more experiences by working together with other students from around the world with different background, state of mind, and location. Hopefully i can applied this knowledge in my daily job and for my own country.
  • Anonymous
    The content of the lectures was interesting, however, it did not reflect on what you would expect from the title. This course gives a general overview of research practices in tourism, it does not give actual insights about sustainable tourism or future...
  • Anonymous
    In a very nutritious course that you can get a lot of benefit from, only it limits you to explore and investigate more because you don't get the complete plan.
  • Anonymous
    Really easy to follow and engaging. Loved the videos and how the professor kept me engaged throughout the course. 10/10!
  • Anonymous
    I like to content of the course, but I think there needs to be some improvement done. All the different documents can be arranged in a better way to make it easier for us to follow along. There should also be some form of (or better) communication with...
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    The course instructors within the videos have a lot of positive energy. However, I believe we needed a better guide or coach in the teamwork section. The learning material and order of the course outline flowed. But as we what I stated in my review in for the first course in sustainable tourism, more resources and links to trends, current events or even job libraries should be given
  • Anonymous
    I really liked the possibility of taking a self-placed course, it's a way of approaching a new subject without feeling the weight and commitment of a normal face-to-face course. It's more difficult to self-manage one's own time but this is another challenge that I faced with the desire to improve my skills in this sense too. Group work at a distance is difficult to manage and this is perhaps the part of the course that I liked least. Perhaps an online course should not be based so much on group work, but that's just my opinion.
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    I registered for the free version and was extremely disappointed. Unless you upgrade for the paid/verified version, you are unable to access the majority of this course' materials and resources, so utterly worthless.
  • Anonymous
    A good tourism course challenges us to group up with students worldwide and rethink the future of tourism by changing the market towards a more sustainable way. Working online has many challenges, but is also a good alternative to connecting other countries and due to covid 19. I would also have chosen this course if it was physical. It would have been exciting with more discussions and talking out loud about challenges and future solutions with other students interested in the same topic.
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous is taking this course right now.

    I think it's definitely a bit more time consuming than what we might think, and not as self-paced as some might like it. I do think it's worth it though, the information they provide and the tools they provide make it worth your time and effort.
  • Anonymous
    In my profession as a consultant in the leisure industry, my work these days is very much related to destination management. Many problems that I work on are dealing with the balance between people, planet and profit regarding tourism. In this respect,...
  • Anonymous
    The course really excelled my expectations. The content was accurate and dynamic, always keeping in the interest of the student through various tools such as presentations, vlogs etc. The course was very well structured mounting up concepts slowly and gradually. It was never hectic in any of the activities that were there in the course. The features like discussion forums and other interactive things like the ungraded questions etc. The course also focuses on team building and group works which is a great way to learn new things. This gets even better when the members are from very wide section of the global society. In the end, I would like say that I very much liked the course.
  • Anonymous
    It was a great experience to learn about sustainable tourism on edx platform.

    Many thanks to the "professor" for taking out time and consolidating the fats & relevant data with best of the resources and possibilities for the learners.

    Great work! All the very best.
  • Anonymous
    It was a fantastic course.

    I feel the main bulk of learning depended heavily on having a team, which was initially difficult to organise and slowed the course down immensely. However once the team got started it was very enriching!

    Some of the questions in the exam were written in a way I found it very difficult to understand the question, /or felt that multiple answers could be right. I think this could be improved by establishing a clearer context prior to the questions.

    All together I would strongly recommend this course and found it hugely beneficial to my learning.
  • Anonymous
    I like the course content and its participatory methodology. It was really interesting to be part of a team vision creation, specially connecting, reflecting and working with different students from different cultural and professional background. I am really please with the team work and I encourage future learners to make the most of the team vision process.
  • Anonymous
    I really enjoyed this course, and I think it is set up in a logical manner. I specifically enjoyed all the videos, in which information is clearly set out. I did not participate in team vision, because I noticed that it was difficult to find people to work with in the same period. This is unfortunate, so I did my reflection in a different way.
  • Anonymous
    I really like the way you present the material via videos. But communication if you have questions must be much easier. Its outdated how it is possible now. This problem costed me so much time.
    Also some briefings what to do and how must be more clear. And dont ask to do the presentation only in Sway, no one knows this system.

  • Anonymous
    Thank you very much for your fun and structured teachings and your way of thinking (thoughts-provoking)... I particularly appreciated illustrated examples of your documentary and pitches, and some of other students too. Always relevant to discover personal point of views all around the world...
  • Anonymous
    Thanks to this course, I really change my way of seeing the tourism. I will be really careful the next time I could like to travel, mostly in the preparation of the trip. The choice of the destination, way of doing to this destination, the choice of housing and visit.

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