Dear colleagues and friends,
I am very happy and excited to write these lines, honored to start serving our IFITT community as president.
First, I want to thank the past president, Dimitrios Buhalis, for his
fundamental role in bringing IFITT where it is now, as well as all other
previous presidents: Hannes Werthner, Josef Margreiter, and Andrew
Frew. I would also like to thank all members of the previous board, for
their great service.
I am pleased to introduce the members of
the new board: Iis Tussyadiah, vice-president, Mathias Fuchs, Wolfram
Hoepken, Alessandro Inversini, Barbara Neuhofer, Tinkara Pavlovcic,
Dimitris Serifis, and Phil Xiang. With their remarkable competence and
commitment, I am sure we will do a great journey together.
In Lugano, Dr. Nadzeya Kalbaska from webatelier.net will lead a
dedicated team: Hazique Gul Memon, managing online communication
activities, and Alessandra Filippi, devoted to membership management.
In Dublin, while enjoying ENTER2014, I had the chance to briefly
present my approach and main goals: you can see the full presentation here.
Let us start with our identity. Like in the Irish
Claddagh, we have two hands keeping a crowned heart: on one hand, we
need to be relevant for the industry and responsible for society, while
on the other hand we have to ensure scientific soundness and rigor. Both
activities being done with an un-divided heart: Share knowledge,
experience, and a true passion for ICT in travel and tourism!
Three major areas of activity should be addressed:
Service to our members: listening to their needs, keeping them in
contact, making sure that they know each other and enjoy relevant and
fruitful conversations, providing relevant materials to learn and
upgrade. All in all, we need to ensure that we constantly provide value
IFITT growth: should happen
naturally, supporting chapters and sense of ownership, making sure that
IFITT flag is present at relevant events. Communication will play a
major role here. After having tested several channels, we are going to
focus on a few selected ones: this newsletter, our website, Facebook,
Twitter, and LinkedIn.
Walk the talk: we constantly need to
stay focused on our role, as pioneers in the field of eTourism, we will
“walk the talk” in the way we communicate and cover bleeding edge
As you can see, there will be a clear continuity with
the steps done by IFITT so far: we will be happy if we are able to
continue the journey even further, with passion and focus.
About my role and myself. I am professor at Università della Svizzera
italiana (USI Lugano, Switzerland), and dean of the Faculty of
Communication Sciences. I am director of the Institute for Communication
Technologies, and scientific director of three labs: webatelier.net,
devoted to eTourism, NewMinE Lab, devoted to ICT4D, and eLab, devoted to
eLearning. In 2013, I have become chair-holder of the UNESCO chair in
ICT to develop and promote sustainable tourism in World Heritage Sites,
recently established at USI Lugano.
To move to more serious
things: I am married with Stefania, and I am a father of six kids:
Giorgio, Giuseppe, Teresa, Marco, Carlo, and Davide. Moreover, we live
I will play my role as a facilitator, who is
supposed to listen to our community’s needs, and to help it grow in a
harmonic way. To make sure that every IFITT member can feel he/she is
the real president!
Yours, in eTourism,
Please, find below the 18th issue of IFITT newsletter featuring:
•Welcome from the president
•Self presentation of the new Board members
•Selected photos from ENTER2014
•Featured IFITT Events
•Presentation of Lugano Team
Please find the full newsletter here: http://ifitt.org/admin/public/uploads/files/ifitt_newsletter_18th_2014.pdf