Session 8
The development of tourism in historical perspective

Influences on local Alpine communities and the learning outcomes for today

Session 8
Alpine tourism has proven to be a powerful promotor of economic and societal change in many regions. From the 19th century beginnings of modern tourism until today, different development paths have been taken, such as elite spa and sports tourism, the “invention” of the winter season bringing millions of skiers to the Alps each year, opening new ways for economic growth while also generating new socioecological risks, or the creation of national parks, an attempt to harmonize protection goals with tourism marketing. The session’s aim is to trace long-term developments by evaluating different regional case studies on Alpine tourism in Austria and Switzerland. This evaluation will guide a discussion on what lessons can be learned for recent development strategies and the social, economic and ecological sustainability of Alpine communities.

Design of session and forms of presentation
Three papers and comment:

  • Chair: Martin Knoll (University of Salzburg)
  • Christian Rohr (University of Bern): Societal change in 19th century Swiss tourist spots. Evidence from the travel handbooks by Murray and Baedeker (1830s to 1914)
  • Robert Groß (Alpen-Adria-University Klagenfurt/Vienna/Graz): Portraying the technological transformation of the Alps. Winter tourism history mirrored in picture postcards from Vorarlberg
  • Katharina Scharf (University of Salzburg): Urbanizing Alpine tourism. The hybrid nature of tourism in the Austrian Bundesland Salzburg
  • Jon Mathieu (University of Lucerne): Comment

Organisers: Institute of History, Section of Economic, Social and Environmental History, University of Bern
Contact: Christian Rohr

Tourist information, Sitzungssaal