University of Florida

Tourism Crisis Management Initiative

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Program Overview

Online Continuing Education Program in Tourism Crisis Management

The Online Continuing Education Program in Tourism Crisis Management is an interactive online program designed to provide tourism professionals with the expertise and tools needed to plan and prepare for crisis events. This includes nature- and human-induced disasters that affect their destination or tourism-related business.

While research shows that many organizations have some type of crisis management plan, many are generic or contain only certain essential components of an emergency plan. The Online Continuing Education Program in Tourism Crisis Management is different in that our comprehensive model addresses the four stages of crisis planning (Reduction, Readiness, Response, and Recovery) and includes specific planning processes for addressing guest, employee, and asset impacts.

The program is unique in that it combines industry best practices with innovative research in the area of tourism crisis management. Some of the key residuals from TCMI’s studies, to date, include:

  • Research shows that the majority of businesses are focused on the incident phase of planning, with a particular focus on the communication portion of the response.
  • The majority of businesses lack attention to the pre-incident phase of planning and have not spent time identifying potential crises which would affect their business and more specifically, how to be ready when a crisis does occur.
  • Recovery is an afterthought because most businesses do not consider writing down the pathway to recovery, including detailed methods which address business continuity, human resources, and internal debriefing.
  • The level of attention to unique aspects of the business is lacking and most plans are generic. Details relative to different types of crises are also lacking and thus the ability to respond in a focused timely manner has been compromised.

The program builds knowledge in the area of crisis management and participants ultimately develop a tourism specific crisis management plan. Core content of the program includes:

  • Fundamentals of tourism crisis management.
  • Fundamentals of emergency management.
  • Introduction of the TCMI model and competing tourism crisis management models.
  • Building an end-to-end tourism crisis management plan.

The online environment allows for interaction and benchmarking between fellow professionals and faculty without the time and investment of travel. During the course of the program, team members will receive a framework and the tools to create a comprehensive crisis management plan for their organization that follows the complete reduction, readiness, response, and recovery model.

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