everyone needs to recharge and no one can perform indefinitely. To cope with everyday life, entrepreneurs need resources to counterbalance the stresses and strains.
Food is an important part of tourism. Often, we experience the best moments from our travels in restaurants and cafes or, for example, the tasting moments spent at farms and markets. There are wonderful food tourism destinations in Satakunta, and our food industry is also well known in Finland. However, the development of food tourism is still in its early stages in our region.
The tourism and hospitality sector composes a complex ecosystem that includes different kinds and sizes of businesses, economic activities and skills needs. The significant impact of COVID-19 in the sector and the urgent need to address the digital and green transition continues to challenge the sector and demands new solutions.
The tourism, hospitality and restaurant sectors are suffering from a shortage of labor, and the attractiveness of the sectors has clearly weakened in the eyes of job seekers. While some entrepreneurs have hit records in the number of customers, others are persevering and looking for ways to get back on their feet after the pandemic. As consumption potentially recovers, the sectors have faced major challenges in finding skillful workers.
At the latest, when a small virus began to turn the world upside down two years ago, everybody learned the word resilience. New, very exceptional circumstances demanded flexibility, new ways of thinking, new approaches, and the ability to remain optimistic. There is no single descriptive word to translate resilience into Finnish, so the word has become established as such here as well. What, however, does resilience really mean?
One of the missions of universities of applied sciences is to produce important research knowledge. The Center for Tourism Business Development is an excellent example of this, producing new knowledge and new solutions for tourism. Tourism operators are the primary beneficiaries of this knowledge, but very often also students. Best of all, students also have the opportunity to be involved in producing this knowledge.