Crises Response and Recovery for the Tourism Industry 2016 SIG symposium

Date:         Friday 12 February 2016

Time:         9:30am – 4:30pm

Venue:      Blue Mountains International Hotel Management School, City Campus – Level 4/532-540 George St, Sydney

Cost:         CAUTHE Members: $60, Non-members: $80 Includes: Morning and afternoon tea, lunch, drinks and canapés on conclusion of the event

Chairs:      Dr David Beirman, University of Technology Sydney & Dr Gabby Walters, University of Queensland


The first Risk, Crises and Recovery SIG symposium will be held immediately following the CAUTHE 2016 conference. The aim of this symposium is to share and discuss the issues facing the Australian tourism sector with regards to crises preparedness, response and recovery.

The symposium will:

  • facilitate conversations between industry and academia with examples of best practice, relevant research applications, questions that need answering and issues concerning disaster recovery that remain problematic for the tourism industry.
  • provide a knowledge sharing platform that will enhance participants’ knowledge and awareness of proven effective response and recovery strategies and areas in need of improvement.
  • allow academics to extend their research program as they gain an understanding of the issues currently faced by the tourism industry that are in need of further investigation.
  • provide industry participants with best practice examples of their peers and practical research driven recommendations from academia.
  • facilitate opportunities for networking to allow delegates to elaborate on the issues raised.

Download program

Register here

Key Note Speakers

terry-0743_croppedTerry Robinson – CEO Destination Gippsland

Terry has been the CEO of Destination Gippsland (the Regional Tourism Board in Gippsland, eastern Victoria) since its inception in 2008. Gippsland is a nature based region that has experienced significant natural disasters that have impacted on tourism. In the past six years the region has had three major bushfires, two floods and a blue-green algal bloom outbreak on the Gippsland Lakes.

Terry is responsible for the three strategic priorities of the organisation: Destination Marketing, Industry Development and Tourism Investment. Within this scope Terry co-ordinates the tourism industry’s Resilience Program that includes the preparation, response and recovery to any crisis event. The organisation provides leadership to the entire Gippsland tourism sector that is worth $1.8 billion annually and employs 15,000 people. Destination Gippsland was created as a pilot regional tourism organisation by Tourism Victoria and the Gippsland Local Government Network. The model has now been implemented in nine other regions across Victoria. Despite the impact of natural disasters, visitation and yield has increased and Gippsland has won the Victorian Tourism Award for Tourism Marketing 2008, 2009, and 2010; Australian Tourism Award 2011; and the Australian Marketing Institute Brand Experience for Victoria.

Michael MeadMichael Meade – Marketing Consultant – 2M Hospitality

The Principal of Sydney based consultancy 2M Hospitality; Michael Meade has rich experience in aviation, hospitality and tourism marketing and management across all levels of the industry throughout Asia Pacific. Michael has lived and worked in key markets across Asia, Australia, New Zealand, the Pacific and the UK. Michael knows how to achieve results in challenging and multi-cultural environments. He is a vastly experienced senior marketing executive, specializing in new product development and change management.

Michael has held senior sales and marketing roles with leading brands and independent hotels including; InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG), Sheraton, Jin Jiang Hotels China, Rendezvous Hospitality Group, Southern Pacific Hotels Corporation (SPHC), All Seasons Hotels and British Airways. In 2012 Michael was the Acting CEO of Tourism Fiji and led a successful tourism revival after the devastating floods of January and March 2012. In 2015 Michael assisted Vanuatu with a tourism recovery plan to help the country and industry to recover from the extremely destructive category 5 Cyclone Pam in March 2015.

Stuart Toplis_150Dr Stuart Toplis – Industry Sustainability Manager, Tourism Victoria

Stuart Toplis has considerable travel and tourism industry experience, particularly in the areas of regional tourism, sustainable tourism and crisis management and holds a Doctor of Philosophy, specialising in sustainable tourism. Stuart is currently employed by Tourism Victoria in the role of Manager Industry Sustainability. He has responsibility for a number of industry development matters, including sustainable tourism, tourism signing, tourism health and safety and crisis management. Stuart has been responsible for the development of innovative industry support products such as the Talking Up Tourism toolkit, Open for Business crisis management guide, Tourism Crisis Management Planning: A guide for destination managers as well as a suite of materials to assist tourism businesses engage with clients on bushfire safety. As a key part of his role, Stuart works closely with senior personnel of Victoria’s emergency services agencies and represents Tourism Victoria and the tourism industry on a number of crisis-related committees, including the State Emergency Management Team.

Chris Flynn_150Chris Flynn – Regional Director Pacific, Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA)

Mr Chris Flynn, Regional Director-Pacific for the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA), a position that requires liaison at the most senior levels of industry and Government in an effort to support the growth of the visitor economies of the 19 nations contained with his portfolio. After studying tourism in the United Kingdom, Chris worked with both British Airways and Qantas Airways before moving to Australia to take up a senior position with Ansett Australia. With more than 30 years experience in international aviation and tourism and having operated in regions such as UK, Europe, United States, Asia and the Pacific, Chris has developed an intimate knowledge of the industry and the requirements needed to identify and explore new growth opportunities within this fast paced environment


For further information please contact the symposium chairs:

Dr David Beirman email

Dr Gabby Walters email