About THL > Introductions > Tibetan Geotourism Portal Resources > Tibetan Geotourism Portal Overview
The Tibetan Geotourism Portal is an initiative providing high quality resources to tourists, local communities, and professionals alike with the goal of promoting and facilitating responsible and engaged forms of tourism that benefit everyone involved. Many forms of tourism neglect the full participation of local residents to the determent of the communities themselves, as well as to the experiences of the tourists themselves.
- Facilitating more Sensitive and Engaged Tourists
- Providing Better Knowledge
- Enabling Local Self-Representation
- Empowering Local Communities
- Facilitating Engaged Followup by Tourists
Republishing Academic Knowledge: Relying upon the Tibetan and Himalayan Library's (THL) global network of scholars and large scholarly collections, huge amounts of accurate scholarly knowledge with integrity and depth are redeployed for consultation by tourists. Tourists thus have information that is more accurate, more sensitive to local conditions, perspectives, and needs, and more in-depth.
Place-Based Digital Magic : THL's cutting-edge digital infrastructure automatically interconnects resources - photos, videos, dictionary terms, place studies, texts, essays, and much more - from multiple sources in an integrated way by place. Tourists can thus explore places in a rich, immersive fashion going from lovely media to in-depth analysis.
Promoting and Publishing Community-based Participatory Knowledge Projects: In conjunction with Machik and the University of Virginia's network of connections in Tibet itself with local communities, community leaders, and NGOs, we support local communities using modern technologies and methods - videography, photography, mapping, interviews, etc. - to document their own perspectives, cultures, and ecologies, and then publish the results. Tourists thus have the chance to view the places they will visit, or have visited, through the eyes and minds of the residents themselves. This enables local residents to represent themselves directly to tourists, and in turn makes tourists more sensitive and interested in local communities in their own right.
Providing a Single Stop Location for Information: The Portal provides a single compelling location on the web to get high quality resources and information on Tibet, thus attracting users who can then be educated on the value and importance of responsible and participatory forms of tourism.
Promoting Principles of Responsible and Participatory Tourism: We thread such principles throughout the entire site, while also providing detailed guidelines and tips for everyone involved with the tourism process as to how to conduct tourism in a way that benefits local communities while also providing a richer tourist experience.
Providing Enabling Resources to Local Communities: The Community section of the Portal aims to provide training, referencing, and networking services to local communities to support their involvement in the tourism industry from start to finish. This includes supporting local trekking, learning how to conduct homestays, making restaurants that appeal to tourists, learning how to contact tourism agencies, and conducting events that will be a draw for tourists.