Lab and Community News

Massey Attends Sustainability Conference in Victoria

Masters student Carmen Massey attended the Impact Sustainability Conference which highlighted issues, addressed challenges head-on, provided examples of solutions, opened dialogue between stakeholders and partners and moved attendees to think of actions they could undertake to move the tourism industry toward sustainability.
The conference provided a blend of keynote speakers, ranging from Bob McDonald (CBC’s Quirks and Quarks), who highlighted the preciousness of the earth, and that “we only have one of them”, using a beach ball and cup of water to enthusiastically demonstrate his points.  The British Columbia Minister of Tourism, Honourable Lisa Beare, addressed the importance of tourism to the British Columbia economy, but cautioned that we have to consider the impacts the industry is creating.  A thought-provoking keynote presentation and panel discussion led by Robert Sandford of the United Nations University, summarized the state of the planet and what is at stake if we don’t figure out how to address the significant environmental impact of our current economy, with a focus on the travel and tourism industry.  There was a strong Indigenous component throughout the Sustainability conference, with several Indigenous panelists and presenters providing perspectives of impact on their communities and economies, both positive and negative, by the tourism industry.  The conference wrapped up on Day 3 with a panel discussion of the impact of tourism in parks and protected areas, with a focus on national parks.
Impact Sustainability Conference wrapped up by asking attendees what they could do in their own role to support sustainability.  Next year’s Impact conference topics will arise out of this year’s discussions and will evolve from the issues and priorities identified in 2019.  A proceedings document will be provided to attendees and several action items were noted to be moved forward on a provincial and federal level during the coming year.

South African Tourism Conference a Success…

Pictured above: Carmen Massey (Centre) Fauve Garson-Stewart (right) and Colleen Black (left) students at TRU at the ICNT conference in South Africa.

Thompson Rivers University was well represented at the recent International Competence Network of Tourism Research (ICNT) conference at Northwest University in Potchefstroom, South Africa.  Carmen Massey, TRU Masters of Science Environmental Science candidate working in the Rural Livelihoods and Sustainable Communities lab, presented her research on the role of relationships in sustainability at the Adams River salmon run.  TRU tourism undergraduate students Fauve Garson-Stewart and Colleen Black presented their UREAP research projects related to responsible tourism.

The ICNT network is an international group of tourism researchers who gather once per year to share recent work on tourism research.  Nine countries were represented at this year’s conference in South Africa.  “The ICNT conference was an excellent opportunity to present my work in front of an international group of tourism researchers, and to have them give me feedback on my research.  I especially benefited from listening to each of their projects and discovered the richness and diversity of tourism research being conducted.  I appreciate that TRU supported me in this experience,” says Carmen about her conference experience.

 

Presentation:

Carmem Massey,  Exploring the Network of Relationships at the Adams River Salmon Run, British Columbia, Canada.

The Lab Celebrates its First Graduates

Pictured above from left: Kelsey Boule, Dr. Courtney Mason and Dominique Hazel.

At TRU’s October graduation ceremony, the Rural Livelihoods and Sustainable Communities Laboratory celebrated its first two graduates. Dominique Hazel and Kelsey Boule both successfully defended their masters’ theses this past summer.

Kelsey relocated to the lower mainland and is now working for Simon Fraser University. Dominique has joined the team at TRU’s Research Office.

Congratulations to both of them for all of their hard work and mentorship!

Salmon Symposium (Oct 2018)

Shuswap Salmon Symposium a Resounding Success
(Kenthen Thomas performing at Renaming Ceremony Salute to the Sockeye festival site).

 

Academics, scientists, Indigenous Elders and knowledge keepers, students, youth, community members, conservationists, politicians and industry partners gathered for the inaugural Shuswap Salmon Symposium, September 30 and October 1 in Squilax, BC.  The Symposium was held at the site of the Adams River Salmon Run.  The  gathering was focussed on discussing salmon conservation from multiple perspectives, including: traditional knowledge, community, art, science, law, culture, spirituality, governance, management and economics.

Secwepemc Elder Mike Arnouse speaking at the Symposium
Attendees visited Tsútswecw Provincial Park to witness the renaming of park, and were led on walks with Indigenous elders and knowledge-keepers to receive a greater understanding of Secwepemc connection to salmon.  The Symposium continued at nearby Quaaout Lodge where an Indigenous feast was enjoyed and several presenters shared perspectives on the issues and challenges facing salmon conservation, from habitat concerns, need to incorporate Traditional Ecological Knowledge, realities facing fisheries managers, declining salmon populations, fish farming effects, and Indigenous lived experiences.  A stimulating panel discussion covered many areas of concern related to salmon conservation and the action planning sessions enabled open dialogue between attendees.  

TRU Masters of Science, Environmental Science candidate, Carmen Massey, TRU Bachelor of Tourism alumni, Julie John, TRU Dean of Science, Tom Dickenson, TRU Canada Research Chair, Courtney Mason, and TRU Executive Director of Aboriginal Affairs, Paul Michel, were instrumental in bringing together the Salmon Symposium in collaboration with The Adams River Salmon Society and Little Shuswap Lake Indian Band, and numerous community members, industry and conservationist partners.  TRU students and faculty from Science, Law, Business and Tourism were in attendance for this in augural event.  The action planning sessions and feedback reports reflect a strong desire to move this multi-disciplinary conversation forward in the future.

Photograph credit: Jim Cooperman