Professor Buhalis said as global tourism is reaching 1billion international tourism it is becoming a global industry regenerating economies and regions contributing to the welfare and happiness of people around the world, we need new innovative management and marketing strategies to achieve competitive advantage for global tourism destinations.

To manage this industry in an innovative way we need to use advanced Information Communication Technologies to coordinate and manage the local culture, resources and businesses. Creating Smart Cities and Smart Tourism Destinations will enable dynamic networking, proactive management and customer orientation enhancing the value of tourism activity. Neural networks will allow dynamic clustering of tourism products towards individualised products that are context aware and add personal value.

Technology and particularly Social Media will also enable us to engage prospective and active tourists in a meaningful cocreation of memorable tourism experiences. User Generated Content will not only offer inspirational ideas for people in their travel decision making process but will also encourage the development of deep and personal memorable experiences. Cocreating between travellers and tourism destinations and organisations will be based on a range of technological mobile platforms and devices and will amalgamate content from the best resources available dynamically at the context of the user.

Augmented Reality and Gamification will allow us to develop technology based solutions that blend reality with information and digital content to enhance tourism experiences and support a deeper engagement and interaction. This will be particularly important for Cultural Heritage destinations where information on culture and heritage will be presented in advanced visual technologies to help interpretation and deep level consumer engagement as well as cocreation with fellow travelers before, during and after the travel experience.

It is great to see how technologies can enhance destinations such as the vibrant cosmopolitan city of Istanbul to take full advantage of their potential and maximise the value generated for all their stakeholders.


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