During 2006, a 2010 Knowledge Gateway evolved out of the development of TourGate, a broader-based tourism knowledge gateway, which is currently being implemented by the Department of Tourism Management at the University of Pretoria. The pilot phase for this initiative was undertaken in collaboration with the CSIR, with the support of the Innovation Fund of the National Research Foundation.
Various strategic workshops, related to the hosting of the 2010 Soccer World Cup, were facilitated by Prof Ernie Heath with Tshwane stakeholders (initiated and supported by the Tshwane Metro), South African Chambers of Commerce and Industry (CHAMSA) and private sector stakeholders. During these workshops, the need was consistently identified for a one-stop, easily accessible and user-friendly gateway to relevant information and knowledge to inform decision-making, planning and marketing aspects related to the hosting of the 2010 event.
· The focus of the 2010 Knowledge Gateway
Based on the needs and expectations expressed by stakeholders, the key focus of the 2010 Knowledge Gateway will, among others, be to provide information and knowledge on best practices and lessons to be learnt from previous events in various areas, ranging from how to optimally involve local communities (creating a “festival for all”); how to responsibly balance and manage the social, economic and environmental impacts; how to unlock entrepreneurial opportunities; how to manage and market the opportunities before, during and after the event (avoiding the event only becoming a “30-day wonder”); and how to ensure long-lasting legacies.
· Balancing education, research and industry interaction through the Gateway initiative
The development of the 2010 Knowledge Gateway is part of the Department of Tourism Management’s longer term vision to facilitate increasing student-industry interaction and collaboration. In this regard, various research projects related to 2010 are already being undertaken by postgraduate students, which will also provide inputs into the 2010 Gateway. Furthermore, students at all levels will have the opportunity to directly and indirectly contribute to and benefit from the initiative.