Under Epler Wood's leadership, the International Sustainable Tourism Initiative at Harvard's Chan School of Public Health establishes three groundbreaking research areas.
Advanced Tools for Destination Management and Climate Change Preparation This research will introduce the best computerized design systems to plan for the rapid growth of tourism to respond to the urgent need to protect coastal areas and vulnerable ecosystems, gauge the use of natural resources, monitor climate impacts, and plan for required infrastructure and landscape protection strategies.
Healthy, Sustainable Food Supply Chains for Tourism This global research project will be the first in the world to review the environmental, health, and business implications of linking hotels to local and international food supply chains. The goal of this project is to advance the management of healthy, hotel food supply chains while maximizing benefits for local suppliers and host populations.
Policy Innovation in Tourism Development This research project opens up new opportunities for governments to answer questions about how to respond to the need for sustainable infrastructure to manage tourism growth. The goal of this project is to develop robust and innovative solutions to the financing and development of sustainable energy, solid waste, water, and waste water systems for both tourism and host community needs.
What's New at EWI
Boston Globe feature interview with Megan Epler Wood on Ecotourism
Megan Epler Wood was elected to the global executive committee of the "Tourism and Protected Area Specialist Group" for the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN). She joins global experts to provide strategic advice to governments and others on the optimal approaches to sustainable tourism in protected and natural areas; strengthen the capacity and effectiveness of protected area managers, policy makers, and others in relation to sustainable tourism; enhance the level of tourism contribution to the goals of protected areas and protected area systems; and Megan will chair the committee for knowledge development to help improve how the tourism industry generates global economic benefits to protected areas.
Megan Epler Wood interviewed on PBS
This past August, Megan appeared on Connect, a Vermont PBS talk show that features regional personalities doing pioneering work in the world. Megan discusses the evolution of ecotourism over the past 25 years; whether rural areas are more likely to be exploited by tourism; threats to ecotourism; how competition for resources impacts ecotourism; and her projects in Brazil.