Tourism, learning, green economy, attitude, Latvia
Tourism is already an important economic sector for many countries and regions around the world. In the terms of resources, many states have little more than attractive, currently unpolluted environments to market internationally in order to sustain their growing populations' increasing demands. It is vital that such destinations understand the ways in which modern tourism can be harnessed to serve their needs without damaging the assets upon which the prosperity depends. Today, the business volume of tourism equals or even surpasses that of oil exports, food products or auto-mobiles. Tourism has become one of the major players in international commerce, and represents at the same time one of the main income sources for many developing countries. This growth goes hand in hand with an increasing diversification and competition among destinations. This global spread of tourism in industrialised and developed states has produced economic and employment benefits in many related sectors – from construction to agriculture or telecommunications. The contribution of tourism to economic well-being depends on the quality and the revenues of the tourism offer. United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) assists destinations in their sustainable positioning in even more complex national and international markets. As the United Nations agency dedicated to tourism, UNWTO points out that particularly developing countries tends to benefit from sustainable tourism and acts to help make this a reality. In the way to green economy the role of the quality of the education has become significant. The article summarizes the opinions of tourism specialists on how practically suitable and qualitative was the knowledge from their studies. The article is dedicated for specialists of the tourism industry, for their awareness and satisfaction with the knowledge gained in the study process. Article aims to find the views of the emerging tourism company managers on the state of the industry, current study programs and the need to change them. The article includes results of a survey done in 2013, which demonstrates the need for changes in study programs and the need for more professional practice opportunities during studies. Paradoxically, the developing tourist destination countries have a far greater potential influence over their countries’ tourism. They are potentially better capable to evaluate the success of their marketing efforts and impact of lifelong learning, new skills and competences. In practice, however, they mostly have very restricted budgets, lack of the professional management skills to exploit their advantages and are often dominated by powerful tour operator influences.