Webinar: Tourism and Covid-19

Opportunities and challenges for rural communities

This event has now passed. You can view the recording of the webinar here.

COVID-19 has dealt a significant blow to Aotearoa New Zealand’s tourism industry. This unprecedented global event has highlighted the vulnerability of the tourism industry, and ongoing uncertainty about future international travel restrictions has led to a call for a ‘reimagined tourism’ system that will lead to a more sustainable and resilient future.

Join our Rural programme researchers Dr Caroline Orchiston and Dr Joanna Fountain to hear how COVID-19, and debates about the future shape of tourism, brings opportunities as well as challenges for rural communities in Aotearoa New Zealand.

Informed by ongoing programmes of tourism research, they will ask: How can our understanding of hazards be applied to this global pandemic, and to what extent do the characteristics of rural communities provide unique opportunities to adapt to unfolding tourism futures?


Tuesday 13 October, 11am – 12pm


Join event here



Dr Caroline Orchiston (Deputy Director at the Centre for Sustainability, University of Otago). Caroline will give an overview of the Resilience Challenge Rural programme of tourism research, and in the context of COVID-19 discuss:

  • Understanding tourist exposure to hazards in the South Island
  • Tourism and emergency management connections and opportunities
  • COVID-19 recovery issues for Regional Tourism Organisations


Dr Joanna Fountain (Senior Lecturer in Tourism and Rural Social Scientist at Lincoln University). Joanna will provide an overview of insights and research exploring:

  • Long-term recovery trajectories in North Canterbury and Kaikōura
  • Re-imagining rural tourism in the shadow of a global pandemic
  • Tourism as a tool for rural resilience in the context of compounding hazards: lessons learnt and the way forward.


This free webinar will be useful to those involved in the tourism sector, rural communities, and central / local government, as well as researchers and students. There will be an opportunity to ask questions of the research team.

The webinar will be hosted online using MSTeams and is open to all. You don’t need to download MSTeams in advance – it will work over a web browser.

Use the link below to add the webinar to your calendar. We look forward to sharing our research with you soon! 



Webinar Speakers

Dr Caroline Orchiston 
University of Otago 

Caroline is the Deputy Director of the Centre for Sustainability at the University of Otago in Dunedin, and co-leads the Resilience Challenge Rural programme.

She has more than ten years of applied social science research experience focussed on rural, community and tourism resilience related to earthquake, tsunami and climate-related hazards. She has published conceptual and empirical contributions in science and business journals on tourism resilience and sustainability, post-disaster community recovery and rural resilience. In addition to her role as co-lead for the Rural programme, Caroline is on the Leadership team for QuakeCoRE and is the Science Lead for Project AF8, an award-winning multi-agency Alpine Fault response planning initiative.

Dr Joanna Fountain
Lincoln University 

Joanna is a Senior Lecturer in Tourism and Rural Social Scientist at Lincoln University.

Joanna’s research seeks to bring a social scientific understanding to rural stakeholders’ perceptions and experiences of rural change, focused on community festivals, agrifood and wine tourism, and destination branding. She is interested also in wine consumer behaviour and resilience in the wine industry.