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This biannual meeting will take place on October 18 and 19, and is organized by the City Council, the Valencian Agència del Turisme and the Chair of Tourism Studies Pedro Zaragoza

The XIX International Tourism Forum will focus on 'smart data' and its management for the improvement of tourist destinations

09 July 2018
El XIX Foro Internacional de Turismo se centrará en el ‘smart data’ y su gestión para la mejora de los destinos turísticos

The XIX International Tourism Forum will focus on 'smart data' and its management for the improvement of tourist destinations and the tourist experience. The mayor, Toni Pérez; the regional secretary of Tourism, Francesc Colomer; and the director of the Chair of Tourism Studies Pedro Zaragoza, Jorge Pereira, today have presented the content of this biannual forum, which will be held on October 18 and 19 and organized by the City Council, Agència Valenciana del Turisme and the Chair with the collaboration of Hosbec, Visit Benidorm and the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO).

The mayor explained that the theme of the forum is part of "a strategy in which Benidorm has been working for some time to become the first Smart Tourist Destination (DTI) certified in the world". Under this heading, has detailed, "we will be able to talk about the momentum and cohesion that has also given us the Alliance of Municipalities of Sun and Beach, which are part Adeje, Arona, Benidorm, Calvià, Lloret de Mar, Salou, San Bartolomé de Tiraja and Torremolinos-, of artificial intelligence in tourism, of the 'cryptocurrencies', of the management of 'big data' and how it can help us improve the management of our tourist resources ".

Pérez has indicated that "since its inception" in 1995 this forum has been "a platform for study and work," which "has always been concerned not only with addressing the problems of each moment, but also with glimpsing the challenges that are going to pose the near future. "

The mayor stressed that the theme of the forum is linked to the steps taken by Benidorm in terms of tourism management in recent years, from "the conviction that those destinations that do not address the digital transformation will be a little more outside the epicenter of tourism global". "Only tourism intelligence," he said, "will allow us to continue leading a market that is increasingly globalized and more competitive".

For its part, the regional secretary of Tourism has highlighted that, in addition to "locomotive", Benidorm is also "incubator projected future ideas, proposals and renewal", as well as "the outstanding student to look at us" when talks about projects linked to tourism intelligence. Colomer has stated that intelligent management and information obtained from "smart data" "always" must be geared towards "making the tourist's experience better".

In this sense, the director of the Chair of Tourism Studies Pedro Zaragoza, has remarked that "in the times of tourism" is essential "to obtain, analyze and use the data to turn them into useful information to detect opportunities and threats to the sector early. " This management of the data, on which this edition of the forum will pivot, is "the basis of a competitive intelligence system that allows us to adapt to the changes in the quickest manner". Pereira pointed out that in this edition "there is continuity to the work of previous forums" that dealt with 'smart beaches' -2016- and intelligent tourist destinations -2014-; and has advanced that there will be "four sessions".

In the first session of October 18 the meeting of the Alliance of Municipalities of Sun and Beach -with the presence of all destinations- will be developed and in which the CEHAT and the Hotel Technological Institute will collaborate. The second session that same day will focus on the passage from 'big data' to 'smart data', with the participation of various companies and institutions. On the 19th, the program begins with a session on 'artificial intelligence in tourism', in which CEOs from different companies will take part; while the last session will be structured around cryptocurrencies, with the intervention, among others, of research professors from several universities.