Keynote speakers

Prof Chris Cooper

Chris CooperProfessor Chris Cooper is currently Pro-Vice Chancellor and Dean of the Business Faculty at Oxford Brookes University, UK

He has more than twenty-five years’ experience in the tourism sector and has worked as a researcher and teacher in every region of the world. Professor Cooper works with international agencies in tourism research and education, including United Nations World Tourism Organization where he held the Chair of the Education Council (2005 – 2007) and was awarded the UN Ulysses Medal for contributions to tourism education and policy in 2009.

Professor Cooper is the co-editor of Current Issues in Tourism and is a member of the editorial board for leading tourism, hospitality and leisure journals. He has authored a number of leading textbooks in tourism and is the co-series editor of Channelview’s influential book series ‘Aspects of Tourism’ and series editor of Goodfellow Publisher’s Contemporary Tourism Reviews.


Mr Maurizio Davolio

Maurizio DavolioMr. Maurizio Davolio was born in 1949 and is graduated in law.

He is currently co-President of ACI Tourism (Italian Cooperative Alliance – Tourism), President of AITR, Italian Association for Responsible Tourism established in 1998, and of the European network EARTH aisbl, (European Alliance for Responsible Tourism and Hospitality), established in 2008 as a not for profit Belgian Association.

He is the author of the book “Turismo Responsabile, che cos’è, come si fa” (Responsible Tourism, what it is, how it is done”, edited by Touring Editore in 2011, and the author of many other publications and articles.

He is also a member of the Board of ECPAT Italy (End Child Prostitution Pornography and Trafficking), of which he was one of the founders, of the Board of FITUS, Italian Federation of Social Tourism, and of the Board and Executive Committee of ISTO, International Social Tourism Organization, based in Brussels.


Mr Ramón Estalella Halffter

Ramon EstalellaMr. Ramon Estalella Halffter was born in 1962 and he is a graduate in Law and a Bachelor in Taxation Systems.

He started in the tourism sector in 1987 when he decided to create different travel companies, eco-tourism and environmental management in natural spaces that led him to work in 28 African countries, Asia and America.

From that first contact with the tourism sector and after passing through Firestone (Canary Islands) where he assumed the implementation of the network of countries that constitute the French-speaking Africa, he became manager of the Hotel Association of Tenerife, La Palma, La Gomera and El Hierro (ASHOTEL).

In 2001 he was appointed Director of Sales and Marketing Group Hospitén care until two years later, took over as general secretary of the Association of Hotels in tourist areas of Spain, ZONTUR, a position he held until his appointment as general secretary of the Spanish Confederation of Hotels in 2003 and the Hotel Technology Institute in 2004.

In October 2010 he was appointed member of the executive committee of HOTREC (Association of Hotels, Cafes and Restaurants in Europe)


Mr Jan Eric Frydman

Jan Eric FrydmanMr Jan Eric Frydman is the Head of Unit for Tourism and Culture, Directorate General for Enterprise and Industry of the European Commission. In this capacity, he manages the implementation of the EU’s tourism policy, including its actions and cultural instruments related to tourism.

Mr Frydman has a long experience in the European Commission, mostly in the area of international relations, having served as legal advisor to the director general, as principal administrator for transatlantic relations, as deputy and acting Head of International Affairs and, most recently, as Head of International Regulatory Affairs.

Before joining the European Commission, Mr Frydman’s career has spanned both business and government, primarily in Sweden and the United States.

He served as Group Commander in the Royal Swedish Air Force, following which he held Brand Management positions with The Procter & Gamble Company, was Corporate Banking Officer and Representative for the Nordic countries for The First National Bank of Chicago, and the Vice President and deputy CEO of American Professionals Insurance Company. He also practiced Swedish and international business law for the firm Mannheimer Swartling in Stockholm and New York, and is admitted to the Swedish Bar.

Mr Frydman was born in Stockholm, Sweden. He holds a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in Finance and Economics with Honors, Beta Gamma Sigma, from the University of Oregon, USA and a Master of Laws from the University of Stockholm, Sweden. He has participated in a number of university programs, including the P.I.L. at Harvard Law School. He has been conferred the Swedish Order for the Nation's Defence, the degree of Knight Commander of the Swedish Grand Order of the Amaranth, and the degree of Comendador de Numero of the Imperial Orden Hispanica de Carlos V. Mr. Frydman was elected President of the Swedish Club of Belgium in 2009, a position he still holds.


Mr Javier Gómez-Navarro Navarrete

Javier GómezMr Javier Gómez-Navarro Navarrete was born in Madrid in 1945.

In 1980 he promoted the International Tourism Fair (FITUR) where he was the Technical Secretary until 1983 and member of the Management Committee until 1998. Between 1983 and 1986, he was the President and the General Manager of Viajes Marsans, S.A and also the Director of Mundicolor, Club de Vacaciones, Travelbus and Pullmantur.

From 1987 to 1993, he was the Secretary of State for Sport and the Vice-president of the Organising Committee of the Olympics Games of Barcelona 92’. Then, he became the Minister of Trade and Tourism.

He was the President of MBD and advised on tourism to the governments of Mexico, Chile, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Venezuela, Brazil and Colombia. He was also the Chairman of the Council of Chambers of Commerce, Industry and Navigation as well as the President of Aldeasa.

He is currently the Director of Isolux-Corsan, Techniques Reunidas, SA and World Duty Free Group, among other large companies.



Experts' Panel Participants

Mr Joxe Mari Aizega

Joxe Mari AizegaMr. Joxe Mari Aizega is the General Director of the Basque Culinary Center that integrates the Faculty of Gastronomic Sciences and a Centre for Research and Innovation in Food and Gastronomy. The Center has been created with the support of public institutions, the most relevant international, Spanish and Basque chefs, private companies and Mondragon University.

He is a graduate in Business Administration and Law and Doctor in Law by the University of the Basque Country. He has worked as a Business Administration and Law professor at Mondragon University and at the University of the Basque Country. He is currently Vice-rector at Mondragon University and Founder and General Director of the Basque Culinary Center.

Mr Pablo Alcácer

Pablo AlcácerMr Pablo Alcácer joined The Leading Hotels of the World, Ltd in September 2008 and currently serves as Director, Business Performance for a portfolio of 72 hotel members. As part of the Membership team his primary role is to drive revenue, ensure portfolio quality -as per strict company standards- and assist development with new potential applicants.

Prior to joining The Leading Hotels of the World, Ltd, he served as Marketing Manager for Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. responsible for marketing, e-commerce & online distribution within the Iberia Region. Previously he finished Starwood’s signature EMEA fast-track Graduate Management Program - Vita Futura.

Pablo Alcácer holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in International Hospitality Management from École Hôtelière de Lausanne in Switzerland.

Ms Eva Blasco

Eva BlascoMs. Eva Blasco got a Law degree at University of Valencia. After the graduation, she started her career in the Valencian Regional Ministry of Industry, Trade and Tourism in the Promotion department. At the same time, she practised law, being also teacher of administrative and tourist law.

In March 1993, she started working in IVEX (Valencian Export Institute) first as Manager of Far Eastern Area, and from 1998 until 2002 as Director of IVEX New York. In 2003 she joined the family company, Europa Travel, where she is at present Managing Director.

Among others, she is Vice-president of ECTAA (European Travel Agents and Tour Operators Association), Deputy of International Affairs of CEAV (Spanish Confederation of Travel Agencies), Member of Spanish APJC, Treasure of IVEFA and Member of the Council of Valencia Chamber of Commerce.

Mr Christophe De Bruyn

Christophe De BruynMr. Christophe De Bruyn is the Director of Tourism & Leisure Advisory Services (EUROPRAXIS CONSULTING). He has 26 years of experience in the tourism & hospitality sector throughout more than 21 countries located in Europe, the Mediterranean, the Middle East, Latin America, the Caribbean and Asia. He has been involved in the master planning and feasibility studies of urban hotels, resorts, mix-used developments, especially mega resorts, as well as entertainment & leisure projects. His clients are mainly developers, investors and hotel & leisure companies. He has also a wide experience in the planning and management of tourism destinations, including the setting up of public-private partnership schemes and quality systems.

He obtained a Graduate in Hotel Management at the CERIAT (Centre for Studies and Research on the Food and Tourism Industries) in Brussels, Belgium and he cursed an Executive MBA program at the IESE Business School – Barcelona – associated with the Harvard University.

He is member of the ISHC (International Society of Hospitality Consultants) and an associate consultant for the UNWTO in the area of quality and competitiveness.

Mr Quique Dacosta

Quique DacostaQuique Dacosta was born in 1972 in Jarandilla de la Vera. Originally from Extremadura but Valencian by popular adoption began his professional career as a chef in 1986.

In 1988 he began working in what is today his restaurant, El Poblet (now Quique Dacosta Restaurant) which initially offered Spanish cuisine and then evolved to a more local marine cuisine. With this new turn, he starts to build a distinctive kitchen which contextualizes Alicantine, Valencian and Spanish innovative food.

The environment that embraces and seduces Quique Dacosta marks the future of many of the creations that occur year after year in Denia. The Mediterranean Sea and the Montgó Natural Park. The enclave has been instrumental in his kitchen: inexhaustible wealth in its seabed and particular geographical location.

Today, he is recognized all around the world for its artistic expression of the kitchen. He has become a person who uses his culture, territory and ways of life as a flag that puts an image to the quality, excellence, innovation and tradition to the projection of the Valencian tourism from a cultural and artistic view.

*** 2012/2013 Michelin Guide awards three-stars to Quique Dacosta Restaurant.

2013. The journey of the highest recognition of a restaurant with three Michelin stars has monopolized the beginning of the season.2013.

The scenery, at the express wish of Quique remains intact to last year of 2012, so that customers can enjoy the atmosphere that has earned the restaurant the three Michelin stars. In this Valencian house of tradition, elegance and minimalism; warmth and fragility come together to represent a creative and amazing kitchen that is making the world turn its sight to what happens in Denia.

Mr Manuel Espinar

Manuel EspinarMr Manuel Espinar is the President of the Hospitality Business Federation of Valencia and the Manager of Hispania Gastronomy.

He has a Master in Tourism Business Management by University of Valencia.

As Director of the Hispania Hospitality Company, he has been awarded, among others, the National Prize of Quality Hospitality.

Mr Eduardo Fayos-Solà

Eduardo Fayos-SolàMr Eduardo Fayos-Solà is President of the Ulysses Foundation. He has been Professor of Applied Economics and now teaches Tourism Policy at the University of Valencia. He has been the Executive Secretary for the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) Knowledge Network. Former Director for Europe at the UNWTO from 2007 to 2010. Director of several joint Cooperation for Development projects of UNDP, UNESCO and UNWTO, as well as Founder and Director of the UNWTO Volunteers for Development. Former Director of Education and Knowledge Management, UNWTO, since 1994. He was the Founder and Executive President of the UNWTO.Themis Foundation and the TedQual System for Quality in Tourism Education and Training, as well as Head of Mission for the UNWTO Specialized Human Resource Development Office (1998-2007). From 1991 to 1994 he was the Director General of Tourism for Spain, in the Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Tourism. He was Director of the Tourism PhD Programme at Nebrija University (Madrid, Spain) and Assistant Professor of Economics of Development at the University of Stockholm (Sweden). He was Founder and Director General of the Institute for Tourism in Valencia (ITVA) for six years, until 1991. Between 1979 and 1985, he was a member of the Diplomatic Missions of Spain in Sweden and in the United Kingdom.

Professor Fayos-Solà was Vice-President of the Official School of Tourism of Spain from 1991 to 1994 with responsibility for the Spanish Tourism Education System. He was also Director of the academic journal Tourism Studies and Founder of Tourism Papers and UNWTO TedQual, and at present serves on the Editorial Board of Annals of Tourism Research and Pasos. He has also served as Associate Editor of The Encyclopedia of Tourism and as a member of the board of Tourism Management. He is the editor and co-author of two recent books on Knowledge Management in Tourism (2012) and Tourism and Climate Change (2010), as well as the author of other books, articles and research studies on subjects concerning tourism economics, development and governance. Eduardo Fayos-Solà received a Doctorate in Economics from the University of Valencia (Spain) and a Master in Economics from the University of Stockholm (Sweden). He has also completed courses in the United States (University of Minnesota) and the United Kingdom (Oxford University). He is a member of the International Academy for the Study of Tourism. He has also been a member of the Board of Directors of organizations such as Transmediterránea, Banco Hipotecario and Sociedad Estatal Quinto Centenario. Among the awards he has received is the Knight of the Order of Civil Merit of Spain.

Mr Íñigo García-Aranda

Iñigo García-ArandaMr Íñigo García-Aranda, was born in Madrid, and has a Bachelor in Marketing by ESIC and a MBA by ICADE.

He began his professional career at Phillips, until 1997 when he joined Amadeus España, subsidiary of Amadeus IT Group, leader company in technology for the travel industry. From 1999 to 2007, he was in charge of the marketing and new businesses area in the company until 2007 when he was appointed Marketing Director.

Íñigo García-Aranda participates as regular speaker in the main national tourism conferences organized by the industry associations (FEAAV, AEDAVE, UNAV and ACAV). In addition, he gives lectures and collaborates as professor in different forums and seminars.

Amadeus position as preferential provider of technology for the tourism sector makes this company an excellent observatory of trends. Reports such as A Study on the Adoption of the Self Booking Tools, Cost Control and Beyond o Navigating the Airport of Tomorrow— made by Amadeus at a worldwide level— or The firsrt Spanish travel agencies strategic report —developed by Amadeus España— are some of the reports that Amadeus uses to follow closely the development of the industry and foresee its trends.

Mr Emiliano González

Emiliano GonzalezMr. Emiliano González was born in Madrid in 1951 and studied “Tourism Business Manager” in the Official Tourism School of Madrid. He is now the General Manager of MSC Cruceros in Spain.

His professional career has always been focused on the tourist sector. He began his occupation in 1967, in the remarkable travel agency CHAT (Hispano-American Tourism Company), where he remained until 1980. Afterwards, he carried out different positions of Management in the agencies Viajes Icab, Viajes Atlanta, Viajes Vincit and Viajes Mapfre. He worked in the travel agencies sector for more than 35 years.

He started working at MSC Cruceros in 2002, as Commercial Director. He was appointed General Manager of the company in 2004.

Ms Barbara Jamison

Barbara JamisonBarbara has over 25 years business experience, having lived and worked in France and Germany she now travels extensively around the world securing business tourism and inward investment for London on behalf of London and Partners.

Her career has included working in the export business, wine industry and all aspects of tourism. Her career in tourism has provided Barbara with a 360 degree expertise in the following fields: educational travel, consumer, travel trade, corporate travel, business events and incentives, non for profit association and congresses, major events including the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games and the promotion of 1st and 2nd tier destinations.

She is a true Londoner with a passion for her work heading up the European Business Tourism team within the Mayor's agency London and Partners. London & Partners is a not-for-profit public private partnership, funded by the Mayor of London and a network of commercial partners. London & Partners was created in order to bring together the remits of the capital's promotional agencies: Think London, Study London and Visit London. The aim being to create one single promotional organisation for London that can speak with one voice, vision and mission to all audiences in the UK and internationally. The remit is to drive leisure and business visitors as well as bidding to secure major events in London. L&P can unlock the city for new businesses that want to set up or expand in London and they promote the capital's world class universities to international students.

Barbara has worked through the transitions from the London Tourist Board and Convention Bureau to Visit London and now London and Partners and through this work has acquired expertise in the field of Development and Governance.

Barbara is committed to education, development and CSR activity within our industry and educational institutions. She has been elected by industry piers as the Conference Chair of the Site EMEA Forum in Antwerp and assists various tourism bodies and educational institutions with benchmarking, lectures and key note addresses.

Mr Philippe Lemaistre

Philippe LemaistreMr Philippe Lemaistre has a degree in economics. He entered the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) in 2001 and worked in the Department of sustainable development of tourism during six years. He participated in most of the activities of this Department, which deals with the relationships between tourism and the preservation of cultural and natural heritages, the reduction of poverty, and any other aspect of sustainability.

Since 2007, Mr Lemaistre has worked in programing and coordinating activities of the UNWTO Secretariat, i.e. (a) preparing the Programme of work of the Organization, (b) coordinating its implementation, and (c) evaluating and reporting the achieved results to UNWTO legislative bodies.

Ms Patricia Miralles

Patricia MirallesMs Patricia Miralles has a bachelor's degree in Economics (specialty in rural and urban economic development). She is currently Project Manager of Hotel Technology Institute (ITH), which is responsible for the proposal and project management of R+D+i. Previously, she was responsible for industry projects SEGITTUR and head of the SME in the State Society changeover to the Euro. She is also coordinator of the Technology Platform-ThinkTur Tourism.


Mr Óscar Perelli

Oscar PerelliMr Óscar Perelli del Amo is Bachelor in Economics by Complutense University of Madrid and Master in Economic Analysis and Public Sector by the Spanish Ministry of Economics. Since 2002, he is Head of Research in Exceltur, “Alliance for Tourism Excellence” a lobby group formed by 28 of the most important Spanish tourist companies. Responsible for all the studies carried out by Exceltur, specifically Tourism Competitiveness Monitors applied to Spanish Regions (MoniTUR) and Cities (UrbanTUR), Tourism Quarterly Conjuncture Reports (Tourism Perspectives), Tourism Satellite Accounts (Impactur), Barometer of economic Impact of the 100 most important Spanish tourism destinations and some other different studies on tourism and urban planning. Former partner of International Financial Analysts from 1995 to 2002, he has been Member of Tourism Knowledge and Statistics Experts Committee of Spanish Tourism Strategic Plan “Horizonte 2020” and awarded with the National Urban Planning Award as the team leader of Tourism in the Menorca Territorial Plan. Since 1997, he teaches Spanish Economy in the Complutense University of Madrid.

Mr Juan Rodríguez

Juan RodríguezMr Juan Rodríguez has a Master in Marketing by “Universidad del Rosario” (Bogotá, Colombia, 1991) as well as a Master in “Direzione Alberghiera” at Scuola Internazionale di Scienze Turistiche by World Tourism Organization (Rome, Italy, 1997).

He was the Hotel and Tourism Business Manager at “Externado de Colombia” University in 1985. Also, he worked at the Planning and Development of Specialised Services at Institute Polytechnic Ryarson, Canadian Community College in 1987. He was the Business Development Manager for Avianca Airlines; the Commercial Director of “International Quimbaya Tours” for Latin America and Spain; and the Marketing Director of Celuisma Hotels based in Panama.

Since 2005, he is the Chief Marketing Officer of GHL Hotels Group, the fastest growing operator in Latin America. The company is present in 6 countries and handles more than 50 properties, including hotels, resorts, catering services and convention centres.

Ms Edna Rozo

Edna RozoDirector of the Master's Degree in Planning and Destination Management, Ms. Edna Rozo is in charge of the research area and is the Coordinator of the journal's editorial board of Tourism and Society at the Externado of Colombia University. By delegation from the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Tourism to The Externado, she is the representative of the Sectorial Unit of Normalization in Sustainable Tourism for Colombia. She is currently pursuing her doctorate in Social Studies and has a Master’s Degree in Planning and Management of Regional Development, Master Di Tourism in Italy and a Master of Cultural Tourism in Spain. Extensive experience in direction of interdisciplinary teams for the design and formulation of research and consultancy projects focused on the development, planning and management of destinations in Colombia, directed to the public and private sectors.

Mr José Salinas

José SalinasMr. José Salinas is a lawyer and has also studied economics and international relations. .

From 1984 to 1990, he was the Deputy Economic and Trade Advisor at the Spanish Embassies in Singapore and Malaysia. He has been CEO of the Valencia Tourism Foundation Convention Bureau since this organisation was set up in 1991, and is also the Valencia Conference Centre’s CEO since the venue was opened in 1998. From March 2003 to November 2004, he was in charge of Valencia's bid to host the 32nd America's Cup and was the General Manager of the Valencia 2007 Consortium, an organisation created by the Spanish Central Government, the Valencian Regional Government and the Valencia City Council to manage and stage the event. In 1998, he was named Senior Deputy Chairman of the European Federation of Conference Towns. He has been the Chairman of the Spanish Association of Conference Centres (APCE) since 1999. He is also a member of the Valencian Tourism Council.

Since José Salinas took over at Valencia Tourism and the Valencia Conference Centre, these organisations have received numerous accolades. In 2008, the Valencia Tourism Foundation was given the UNWTO (World Tourism Organisation) Ulysses award for tourism governance; the Best Europe an Building award by the Royal Institute of British Architects in 1999; Best Conference Centre in Spain in 2001 by the Spanish Federation of Professional Congress Organisers; and in 2010 was awarded the title of World's Best Convention Centre by the International Association of Congress Centres.

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