GIFT backs Myanmar project

A temple with grey sky in background.

The new Griffith Institute for Tourism’s commitment to international outreach activity has been underlined in its support for a volunteer role in Myanmar.

GIFT is involved in the selection and mentoring of a young Australian volunteer for a 12-month role contributing to the development of responsible tourism in Myanmar.

The volunteer will help build institutional capacity in effective and sustainable tourism development and assist in the implementation of the Myanmar Tourism Master Plan.

“The tasks will include helping public and private sector tourism personnel to understand generally-accepted international tourism terms and concepts,” said Steve Noakes, adjunct professor to the Griffith Institute for Tourism.

“They will also help guide the implementation of the Master Plan and work on improving ‘English for Tourism’ language and IT skills among tourism staff based in Myanmar.”

Professor Steve Noakes is leading GIFT’s engagement in this example of international outreach activity.

Inaugural GIFT Director, Professor Susanne Becken, says Myanmar is opening up as a South-East Asian tourism destination.

“If Myanmar continues implementing economic, political, and social reforms, international visitor arrivals are forecast to rise from 2.04 million in 2013 to as high as 7.5 million in 2020,” she said.

In 2013, the Government of Myanmar, with the support of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Government of Norway, released the Tourism Master Plan 2013-2020.

“The plan outlines 38 development projects valued at nearly a half billion dollars and aimed at increasing Myanmar’s tourism competitiveness, protecting environmentally-important areas, and safeguarding ethnic communities.”

The Australian volunteer will participate in a Responsible Tourism and Hospitality Management Advisor assignment attached to the Ministry of Hotels and Tourism in Yangon.

Funding for the youth ambassador placement is provided by the Australian Volunteers for International Development program, an Australian Government initiative.

Candidates should have a degree in tourism, tourism management, hospitality or a related area and have at least three years of professional work experience in the tourism or hospitality sector. Further application details here.

“GIFT’s support for this project recognises the key location of Griffith University in the Asia—Pacific, and how we can contribute to deepening engagement with the region,” Professor Becken said.

“It also confirms Griffith University’s reputation as one of Australia’s most Asian-engaged universities.”