UP Prof shares knowledge in Azerbaijan
By Prof Ernie Heath
Posted on 16 April 2012
Prof Ernie Heath (second from right), with Prof Hajiami H Atakishi, President of the Azerbaijan Advertiserís Union (centre) and other guest speakers from Turkey and Russia.
Prof Ernie Heath, of the Department of Tourism Management at the University of Pretoria, recently had the opportunity to visit Azerbaijan.
Prof Heath was invited to present a keynote address at the First International Scientific and Practical Conference, entitled Reklam 2012, with the theme “Advertising – Reality and Perspectives. Modern View on Advertising and Marketing”, which was held in the capital city, Baku, from 29 to 30 March 2012.
The title of his address was “Successfully marketing Azerbaijan in the changing global tourism environment”. The address was based on research that had been conducted among leading "best-practice" tourism destinations around the world to determine their key strategies and approaches in response to changes in the macro, competitive and tourism market environments. From this research valuable lessons were learnt that could be relevant to developing tourism destinations such as Azerbaijan.
During his visit, Prof Heath had the opportunity to present a master’s class at QafQaz University in Baku. He was also invited to meet with the Minister of Culture and Tourism for Azerbaijan, Mr Abulfas Garayev, and his staff in the Ministry, to share knowledge on South Africa’s tourism development and marketing initiatives, as well as lessons learnt from South Africa’s hosting of the 2010 Soccer World Cup. This was particularly appreciated as the city of Baku will be hosting the Eurovision Song Contest from 22 to 26 May 2012.
Valuable contacts were made with public and private sector leaders in Azerbaijan’s tourism sector during the Conference, as well as with academics, who were keen to explore collaborative opportunities with their counterparts in South Africa. A key outcome of the Conference was lecturer and student exchange possibilities, as well as the identification of collaborative research opportunities, particularly in the sphere of tourism destination marketing.