Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University



The Japan Tourism Agency "Promoting International Tourism Exchange through Youth Tourism" Seminar at APU


Feb 10, 2010

On Saturday, January 30, 2010, the Japan Tourism Agency and UN-World Tourism Organisation hosted "Promoting International Tourism Exchange through Youth Tourism" seminar was held on the APU campus. Aiming to energize international tourism exchange in the youth-generation, this event saw APU linked with Tokyo and Hokkaido via live-broadcast. APU participants included former-President Monte CASSIM, Vice-President Malcolm COOPER, and APS Associate Professor TODOROKI Hiroshi who joined experts and tourism representatives in a discussion on the current state, importance of, and policies to promote, youth-tourism.
After a few words by Manager of The World Bank Tokyo Development Learning Center, Mr. FUKUI Ryo, the Director General of the World Youth Student and Educational Travel Confederation, Mr. David Jones, delivered a key-note speech under the theme of "World Youth-Tourism Initiatives" before a number of lectures and discussion panels by members of the industry.

APS Associate Professor TODOROKI Hiroshi, who is currently investigating Korean envoys in under the research theme of "Historical heritage and its application for tourism in Korea", delivered a speech entitled "Joseon Tongsinsa Envoys* and Japan-Korea Student Exchange Tourism – an example of Japan-Korea Youth-Tourism".

Dr. TODOROKI introduced his field studies in Japan and Korea in which he and students from APU and Kyunghee University (Korea) spent three weeks re-tracing the routes taken by Joseon Tongsinsa envoys between Seoul and Pusan, Pusan and Kyoto, and Kyoto and Tokyo. Dr TODOROKI said, "This field trip not only provided our students the chance to see first-hand the work of the Joseon Tongsinsa envoys, but also provided a wonderful opportunity to interact, exchange, and get to know the Japan-Korean way of culture and way of life".

A large number of APU students came along to the event and showed a great interest in youth-tourism including NAKAMURA Keichi (APS3, Japan) who commented, "I was very impressed with the students' stories of re-tracing on-foot, blisters and all, the Joseon Tongsinsa envoy routes. Hearing how the atmosphere and relationships between the Japanese and Korean students had changed so remarkably after three weeks of living together, reaffirmed my belief in the importance of international exchange through youth-tourism".

In these days of internationalisation, such exchange and interaction between the next generation of world leaders leads no only to the strengthening of international understanding and relationships of friendship, but also contributes to international peace and harmony. However, the number of young Japanese heading overseas remains in the doldrums and initiatives are needed to revitalize international tourism exchange such as gaining an understanding of youth-needs and creating the necessary environment for youth-tourism while also making youth aware of the meaning and importance of international tourism exchange.

Joseon Tongsinsa Envoy*
During the Edo period the Korean Joseon sent delegates to meet with the Tokugawa Shogunate twelve times. Formalities aside, the mission made various contributions to literature, calligraphy, medicine, Confucianism, practical science, and more, in both countries. Legends are passed on about this mission and various regions in Japan are proud of their connection to this historical heritage.

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