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The mayors of Benidorm and Santander and the Minister of Tourism agree on the need to strengthen public-private collaboration so as not to be left behind

Leading destinations in smart tourism see technology as an ally in the face of the lack of human capital

07 June 2024
mesa de debate

Leading destinations in smart tourism have highlighted this Friday that technology can be an ally for cities and the tourism industry as a whole in the face of the lack of human capital. They did so during a discussion table held within the framework of Digital Tourist under the title 'Leaders in smart tourist destinations', which included the mayor of Benidorm, Toni Pérez; the mayor of Santander, Gema Igual; the Minister of Innovation, Industry, Commerce and Tourism of the Generalitat Valenciana, Nuria Montes; and the Director of Innovation at Segittur, Carlos Romero, who acted as moderator.

The first to refer to this matter was the Minister of Tourism, who considered that "one of the main challenges for the future of the tourism industry is the lack of human capital." For this reason, Nuria Montes has considered that “being able to have better professionalization and better technology can solve many problems” related to this lack of workers that the sector has been facing recurrently for some time now, an argument that later It has been endorsed by the councillors of Benidorm and Santander.

On this point, the mayor of the Cantabrian city has alluded to a job offer recently launched by the Cantabria Hospitality Employers' association to cover 7,500 jobs in this sector and has recalled that it "did not even reach 300 applicants", and then highlighted the need to “empower front-of-house managers, kitchen staff, waiters and the tourism sector as a whole” so that it becomes an attractive job again and pointed out that technology “can help” it.

For his part, the mayor of Benidorm has referred to the role of technology to highlight the “dizzying transformation” that it is promoting and has pointed out that “fortunately, the business community is ahead” of the administrations in many aspects. Toni Pérez has highlighted the importance of public-private collaboration and public-public collaboration, which foster “a regulatory framework that offers us the ability to measure ourselves, compare experiences and follow or reject those that may be more appropriate or less to our destinations.”

About data management, one of the key points for any DTI, the councillor Nuria Montes has been very graphic: “We can continue blindfolding or put on our glasses,” she said, later ensuring that “tourism "Spanish has not only decided to bet on magnifying glasses but is also already using virtual reality glasses," to explain the high degree of implementation of data analysis in this industry.

Along these lines, the mayor of Santander indicated that when this city chose to begin its journey towards the DTI "following the path already laid out by Benidorm", the carrying out of audits and the study of the data has allowed it to "know the footprint of carbon from tourism, compliance with the SDGs or knowing how many people there are in the city at any given time to be able to size the services", as well as "guaranteeing the best coexistence between neighbours and tourists" based on the load that the latter generate destination.