Exploring Mountain Tourism: European University of Armenia Students Visit South Tyrol
Scientific exchange on tourism development in the mountains with a particular focus on sustainability
The students of the "Tourism and Hotel Business" specialization at the European University of Armenia (EUA) recently embarked on a study visit to Eurac Research in South Tyrol, Bolzano. The visit, which took place from 26th June to the 1st of July, focused on exploring the topic of sustainable mountain tourism. Accompanied by professors Tatevik Sargsyan and Tatevik Safaryan, as well as university assistant Anush Galstyan, the students had the opportunity to engage in a diverse range of activities and visits, deepening their understanding of tourism practices in South Tyrol. During their stay, the team at Eurac Research including Greta Erschbamer, Harald Pechlaner, Elisa Piras, Valentin Wallnöfer, Chiara Paris, Francesca Cornella, Alexander Pöder, Ismaila Ouedraogo, Valeria von Miller (Center for Advanced Studies), Philipp Corradini (Institute for Regional Development), and project coordinator Günther Cologna took turns in guiding the group.
The program included a welcome and introduction to Eurac Research with an overview of the organization's research endeavors and a visit to the Messner Mountain Museum, MMM Firmian, in Sigmundskron Castle. The students went for a hike to Baita Sanon at Seiser Alm – Alpe di Siusi immersing themselves in the natural landscape of the Dolomites before stopping at the agritourism farm "Trieferhof" where they learned about farm holidays in cooperation with the Farmers' Association of South Tyrol. In Vinschgau - Val Venosta, the guests from Armenia explored the medieval history of the province during the guided tour of Churburg Castle, the town of Glurns – Glorenza, and the Marienberg – Monte Maria monastery. They also visited the Botanical Gardens of Trauttmansdorff and the Touriseum as well as the city of Meran – Merano, where Empress Sissi spent a few months of her life. Other stops were the sustainability award-winning Hotel “Pfösl” in Deutschnofen – Nova Ponente and the Carezza Lake. Of course, the group also visited South Tyrol's most famous personality, Ötzi, the Iceman.
Thank you to everyone who so kindly welcomed the group and shared their knowledge and experience!
The long-standing partnership between Eurac Research and the European University of Armenia (EUA)
Eurac Research has been involved with the European University of Armenia (EUA) since its foundation in 2001, with Director Stephan Ortner serving on its board. One of the results is a network of education and research institutions, the IERA (International Education and Research Alliance), which has the task of building bridges and partnerships between European institutions and those in the South Caucasus and Central Asia. The 2022/23 cooperation agreement also encompassed teaching activities with 86 online teaching hours, given by the researchers at Eurac Research and structured in three modules from December 2022 to April 2023. The study visit was preceded by a visit of Harald Pechlaner, Head of the Center for Advanced Studies, and the tourism researcher Greta Erschbamer to Armenia in April, where they evaluated the students' final presentations as part of the lecture series.