Professional accreditation in the Australian tourism industry; An uncertain future

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Journal Article
Tourism Management, 2001, 22 (4), pp. 383 - 390
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Until recently, individuals seeking recognition of their professional standing within the Australian tourism industry had but one option, membership of the Australian Institute of Travel and Tourism. More recently, employer bodies in several tourism industry sectors, namely, retail travel, meetings and inbound, have acted to develop individual accreditation schemes designed to confer a level of professional standing upon individuals working in their respective sectors. This paper begins with an overview of the individual tourism-related accreditation schemes currently operating in Australia and then moves on to discuss the forces that have led to their development. Following on from this discussion, the operational difficulties that these programmes have encountered are examined along with their respective future outlooks. It is argued that there appears to be a certain consistency in the problems faced by existing programmes and that these difficulties place a question mark over the longer-term viability of at least some of these schemes. These difficulties, it is suggested, parallel many of the problems being faced by organisation-based accreditation schemes in the tourism industry. In the final part of this paper, some suggestions are made as to how these problems might be addressed. © 2001 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.
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