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Part 2: The Future of the Past: Building Transboundary Bridges of Understanding through Cultural and Heritage Tourism

2023 MEA Summit

Part 2: The Future of the Past: Building Transboundary Bridges of Understanding through Cultural and Heritage Tourism

Thursday, December 7, 2023
12:30 PM - 01:15 PM
Abu Dhabi Rosewood - Rosewood B

Cultural heritage tourism fosters appreciation of the diversity of interdependent regions. Technology and regional cooperation promote heritage tourism throughout the MEA, linking virtual and physical sites and increasing revenue. The vast potential ROI from assigning economic value to cultural heritage remains untapped. MEA’s heritage districts and archaeological parks are underutilized resources that could become engines of sustainable development and job creation. Current cultural heritage and eco-tourism policies miss optimal use and fail to enable adaptive reuse. Panelists will explore regional development and finance strategies to drive ROI from endangered assets that can enhance understanding and growth. Digital technologies enliven traditional (myths, history, local stories), interpretative (archeological, geophysical, environmental), and cultural itineraries connecting visitors and storylines to virtual and physical excursions rich in cultural and environmental content. 

Moderator
Glenn Yago
Senior Fellow and Founder, Financial Innovation Lab, Milken Innovation Center
Speakers
Her Royal Highness Princess Dana Firas
President, Petra National Trust; UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador for Cultural Heritage
Neil Smith
Co-Director, Center for Cyber-Archaeology and Sustainability, Qualcomm Institute, University of California, San Diego
Mariët Westermann
Vice Chancellor and Chief Executive, New York University Abu Dhabi