Dolomiti Paganella Future Lab
About this good practice
The Dolomiti Paganella Tourist Board is the DMO responsible for the tourist promotion and management of 7 localities at the foot of the Brenta Dolomites, UNESCO World Heritage Site. The area, known as the Altopiano della Paganella and located in Trentino (Northern Italy), is facing many challenges related to the impact of current environmental, social and economic transformations.
The “Dolomiti Paganella Future Lab” project was designed to properly decipher these changes, thereby making the local community of the Altopiano della Paganella more resilient, capable of both conceptualizing its own future and elaborating adequate development models to withstand the current challenges.
The good practice has been conceived as a constantly evolving platform, where the involvement of the local community is essential, in order to jointly define a balanced vision for the long-term development of tourism, with the values of livability and sustainability serving as cornerstones.
Residents, young people, visitors, tourist operators and administrators were engaged through round-table meetings, questionnaires and online surveys, in order to collect inputs and impressions on 4 main issues: destination DNA, new generations, climate change and tourism in balance.
The co-creation process continued also during the COVID emergency, a critical phase that reinforced the belief that it is crucial to reflect on our existing development model and adjust it in the name of sustainability.
A list of skills that were essential in designing and developing the project:
analytical and critical thinking; active learning and learning strategies; complex problem-solving; creativity; leadership and social influence; technology use, monitoring and control; flexibility, reasoning and ideation.
Evidence of success
The first two years of the project led to the definition of both the “Charter of Values” and the “Project Catalogue”.
The former, based on 10 guiding principles aims to promote the development of a community founded on shared values, with tourism as the engine for planning and developing the future; the latter, includes 10 future-oriented projects that will help the Altopiano della Paganella become a more balanced holiday destination in the future, both for residents and tourists.
Potential for learning or transfer
The good practice is based on a participatory process involving different stakeholders of a mountain community, with the aim of stimulating reflection on the future development of tourism in a challenging and ever evolving environment. It is possible to explore and learn more about the project, thanks to the documents and video which describes the entire process, methods, activities and outputs.
The initiative can be inspiring for other mountain regions, which are coping with the impacts of climate change and economic transformations, obliging them to rethink their development model.
A good implementation of the good practice is likely to depend on the capacity to keep high levels of engagement by the stakeholders and on a deep knowledge of communication strategies and tools.