UNWTO: Geoffrey Lipman supports African Candidate for Tourism SG


Geoffrey Lipman on the coming UNWTO Elections for Secretary General,  In his own words, says “In this context my friend Alain’s Sky interview is well worth watching”

I have been asked by several of my friends who are running for UNWTO Secretary General to “support their candidacy” I have resisted this for 2 basic reasons. First who the hell cares about my views amongst the 36 States who get to decide next month.

Second it’s late in life to lose friends by taking a stand. BUT I’ve decided to weigh in on three points over the last month of the rather unusual campaign.

And it would be imperative to have a Secretary General who stands up for smart solutions to the existential issue of Climate Change.

But it would be great to have a Secretary General from Africa – there has never been one for 50 years and it is a continent that can offer so much in development support through Travelism (the Travel/Tourism and related infrastructure/services ecosystem).

It will be sad if 2 excellent candidates lose out through split votes and Africa loses out for the next 8 years.

It would be good to have a Secretary General who realizes that we need to move from image travel to Impact-Travel with good and bad impacts measured to manage: with green growth at the core and 2050 climate and technology “future proofed”.

In this context my friend Alain’s Sky interview is well worth watching.

Professor Geoffrey Lipman is currently Director of greenearth.travel and Associate at Schuman Associates Brussels, leading the global Travel & Tourism practice: He is Advisor to the Secretary General of the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO): Advisor to the World Economic Forum (Aviation & Tourism): Chair of the Advisory Board of the DeHaan Institute at Nottingham University UK: Adjunct Professor at Victoria University Australia and Senior Tourism Research Fellow at George Washington University US. He is a Board Member of STDI and Dragon Trails, as well as the Live The Deal campaign.

From 2006 to 2010 Lipman was Assistant Secretary General and Spokesperson of UNWTO, the World Tourism Organization and prior to that acted as Advisor to the Secretary General. He was the first President of WTTC (World Travel & Tourism Council) 1990 to 99: Chair of Green Globe 2000-07 and Executive Director IATA (International Air Transport Association) where he worked from 1966 – 85 as well as a founding partner in Global Aviation Associates, specialising in aviation government relations and competition.

Lipman has written and lectured around the world on tourism strategy, sustainability and airline liberalization, co-authored books on opening up European Aviation, established a Think Tank on Free Trade in the Air and led a major study on EU airline merger policy. He was a member of 2 European Union High Level Commissions – on Airline Liberalization and on Tourism Employment as well as the UK Roundtable on Sustainable Development, the President of Zambia’s Business Advisory Council and the Ethiopia Think Tank. He is a Fellow of the Tourism Society.

Over this period Lipman has played a leading role in many global tourism initiatives including IATA’s Liberalization reform, Development support and Consumer interface: WTTC’s Agenda 21 for Travel & Tourism, Green Globe and Tourism Economic Research: UNWTO’s ST-EP initiative, Liberalization with a Human Face trade strategy, Davos Process on Climate Change and Roadmap for Recovery/T20 Strategy.

Lipman has participated in many international, regional and national Travel & Tourism Economic Summits as speaker and moderator.  He is recognized for irreverent, out of the box thinking on strategic and tactical policymaking, commitment to the Travel and Tourism Sector as an instrument of positive socio-economic development, as well as his passion for sustainable development and the green economy.

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