From: "Harng Luh Sin" <harngluh@...
Sent: Monday, September 10, 2012 8:05:13 PM
Subject: AAG 2013 CFP: Volunteer tourism
Call for Papers: Association of American Geographers (AAG) Annual Meeting 2013, Los Angeles, April 9-13th
Session Title: Volunteer Tourism
Co-organized by Harng Luh, Sin (University of Colorado at Boulder and National University of Singapore) and Tim Oakes (University of Colorado at Boulder)
The recent decades has seen a rise in what is called ‘volunteer tourism’ or ‘voluntourism’ – travelers helping out while having fun, or do-gooders on vacation. Central to the rhetoric in volunteer tourism is the idea that tourism ventures can and should bring about positive impacts to host destinations, and with strong overtones of 'social', 'justice', 'pro-poor', 'green', and 'eco' tourism, volunteer tourism has the capacity to make a direct and tangible improvement to host communities or the natural environment in tourism destinations. From what started off as a niche sector taken up by only few tourists, volunteer tourism is now increasingly available and popular amongst everyday tourists in different parts of the world.
Yet alongside enthusiastic and positive statements on the great potentials that volunteer tourism has in addressing poverty and environmental damage, are also pessimistic and cynical assessments of the “dark side of volunteer tourism”, suggesting that it is nothing but a “a morally seductive adaptation of modern mass tourism” (MacKinnon, 2009). At the same time, volunteer tourism (especially those that involve work in orphanages) is related to criticisms towards 'slum tourism' and the associated ills of voyeurism on poverty, despair and suffering.
Positioned against larger trends such as ethical consumerism in tourism, religious mission travel, work and study immersion programs, and academic fieldwork as ‘volunteer tourism’, this session therefore invites papers considering the various implications of travel based on supposed benefits to social, charitable or environmental causes, and invites critical scholarship to discuss the research agenda in this emerging field.
Please submit abstracts of no more than 250 words along with a short author(s) bibliography by email to Harng Luh, Sin (hlsin@...
) before *30 September 2012*.
For a complete current listing of the Recreation, Tourism and Sport Specialty Group Sponsored Sessions at the 2013 AAG Los Angeles meeting, please visit: