3000 words 2 Aug 2015

The Task Prepare a discussion paper proposing the preparation of a new tourism plan or policy to address an emerging tourism issue. For example, this issue might be an emerging crisis such as the global financial crisis; or an outbreak of a transmittable disease such as avian flu; or a long-term issue such as climate change, coral bleaching or even a planned deviation of a major highway to bypass a tourist town. You will have to make a number of decisions in order to narrow your focus. Remember the more focused the tourism issue you are addressing in your discussion paper, the more targeted your research will be and the easier it will be to write your assignment! You may choose one of the following, or make up your own based on your own interests, experience or knowledge: National tourism planning – e.g. propose a plan/policy to address issues arising from a stubbornly high Australian Dollar (See Tourism Research Australia 2014, Tourism Forecasts – Autumn 2014) Local destination tourism planning – e.g. propose a response plan to manage the effects of climate change and sea-level rise on tourism in a local government area Protected marine environments – e.g. propose a policy to manage possible visitor impacts on a marine natural heritage site Protected lands – e.g. propose a plan to manage commercial tourism operator access to national parks Labour shortage – e.g. propose the development of plan/policy to address the labour and skills shortages affecting tourism service quality. Indigenous tourism – e.g. propose the development of a plan/policy to address identified gaps in supply and demand issues of Indigenous tourism in Australia (See Ruhanen, L, Whitford, M & McLennan, C 2013, Demand and Supply Issues in Indigenous Tourism:
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A Gap Analysis. Synopsis available at: Report Content The report will contain the following information: Position statement (approx. 300 words) – this statement clearly indicates all the assumptions you have made about who you work for, the agency’s goals and the particular goals and objectives of the policy issue or problem that your paper is addressing. This serves as the introduction Background context (approx. 1000 words) – a discussion of issues that have influenced the emergence of this particular issue, ensuring that you have researched and properly referenced your discussion A statement of need (approx. 1000 words) – a background statement on why the tourism plan is needed (consider the role of government, business and other stakeholders, and its possible reasons for government intervention) Scope of the proposed plan (approx. 500 words) – identification of possible policy approaches and instruments that the plan or policy will consider (this helps scope or provide direction to those who might be preparing the plan/policy) Proposed process (approx. 200 words) – an outline of a proposed planning process including details of consultation, implementation and review A bibliography, including at least 20 references that you have cited in the discussion paper. No more than 7 references are to be web sources and at least 10 references must be academic references. In preparing this discussion paper you are to demonstrate your understanding of the tourism planning environment.

You are also required to demonstrate a high level of professional report writing and communication skills, and critical thinking and analytical skills. As a way of demonstrating this, in your paper you are to include the following: Clear headings and well-structured paragraphs No spelling, grammatical or typographical errors In-text referencing and a reference list in Harvard Style as per the library style guide: All data, information and sources are to be clearly acknowledged All quotes are to be properly referenced including author, date and page number. Remember the quality of your paper will help to determine whether the proposed tourism plan or policy will receive government support! Marking criteria (equal weighting) Responds directly to the task posed Links clearly to unit content/theory Depth of thought and critical thinking skills Demonstrates evidence of relevant research Adherence to good academic writing practice (e.g. grammar, spelling, clarity of expression, correct referencing). Examples of discussion papers The following resources provide students with some examples of discussion papers. In some cases, the discussion paper also presents a proposed strategy (these documents are usually longer and more complex in presentation). In your assignment you are not preparing the strategy or policy, you are preparing a discussion paper that will assist decision makers decide whether a plan or policy should be prepared. So remember the audience you are writing for! Commission of the European Communities 2006, A Renewed Tourism EU Policy: Towards a Stronger Partnership for European Tourism. Available at: Responding to challenges in making the best use of available resources and taking advantage of all possible synergies, in 2006 the Commission proposed a renewed European tourism policy. The main aim of this policy is to improve the competitiveness of the European tourism industry and create more and better jobs through the sustainable growth of tourism in Europe and globally. This statement provides an excellent example of a statement of need, justifying why a new policy is needed.

Note the way that data and evidence have been used to back the justification. Goodwin, H 2002, ‘Local Community Involvement in tourism around national parks: Opportunities and constraints’, Current Issues in Tourism, vol. 5, no. 3/4, pp. 338–360. Available at: This article provides an example of how governments can justify their involvement in the particular area of tourism in national parks. Whilst this article is quite specific in the issues it considered, the article is quite useful in illustrating how justification for government intervention and a statement of need for policy development can be presented using different perspectives (in this case, the benefits to the local community and benefits in terms of valuing natural assets). Kruger, H (n.d.), ‘The need for an Innovation-oriented tourism policy’, Federal Ministry of Economics and Labour, Germany. Available at: This paper makes a case for why the German government needs to develop an innovative approach to its tourism policy development. It’s a good practical example of how, in the case of this tourism policy public official (the author is the director of the tourism policy division), a case is constructed to justify government involvement in tourism. UK National Trust 2005, Tourism Policy. Available at: This brochure explains the policy challenges of the UK National Trust, providing some useful background information on significant trends that affect the way that the National Trust develops its tourism policy approach. Tourism South Australia website This website includes links to a range of discussion papers in various tourism planning environments. While formats differ, the elements of each discussion paper are essentially the same. Examine how government involvement is justified, the way that data and research is used to justify and argue the importance of tourism. Tourism Policy Review Group (Ireland) 2003, ‘New Horizons for Irish Tourism: An Agenda for Action’, Report to the Minister for Arts, Sport and Tourism. Available at: http://www.tourismreview.i.e./ This document provides detailed arguments about the need for a new tourism plan for Ireland and then goes on to outline the proposed new plan. It identifies and evaluates current trends and issues and sets out an agenda for change. This is a very detailed document and, as would be expected at a national level, engages in a wide range of issues. You are not expected to produce something as detailed for your Assessment 2. However, this document is useful in that it illustrates how all the different components of the discussion paper come together to form the argument for the new plan of policy. Yarra Valley Council 2008, Tourism Policy Discussion Paper. Available at:

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