How ICT technologies and Smart City tools can improve our experience of tourism destinations.
The Smart City paradigm is meant to be the last (and beloved) son of Postmodernity for urban territories, providing useful tools (an attractive mix of leadership, infrastructures, services and people powered solutions) for making them more efficient, more sustainable and more livable for citizens, as well as more attractive for tourist and occasional visitors.
Tourism is recognised as a global industry for many territories, which see in it a key source of income and benefits, competing with other places and destinations to attract people and businesses.
The addition of both concepts, Smart City + Tourism, may be useful for destinations, particularly if, as nowadays, there is an overwhelming need for cities (and its DMOs and tourist bureaux) to differentiate themselves in order to challenge other territories and establish their credentials as the best choice for prospective visitors and tourists of all sorts. The race of cities to be recognised as a major tourist destination can reveal some success stories, several examples of the perils of commoditisation (urbanalización according to the Spanish term coined by F. Muñoz) and a bunch of sad accounts of wrong programmes regarding city branding/place making policies putting some cities in risk of dying of starvation.