About European congress on rural tourism

After its three previous editions in 2003, 2005, and 2007, the 4th European Congress on Rural Tourism 2012 was a new opportunity to learn about latest trends and obtain first-hand information on this extremely varied activity in Europe. It took place on 8th and 9th of October, 2012 in the picturesque Neamt Land (nord-eastern part of Romania).

"Innovative Tourism - New Life for Rural Areas"

The Congress provided a meeting point and discussion forum for the Rural Tourism entrepreneur, for public and private authorities, as well as for any other professionals involved in rural tourism. After consulting with 30 regional and national Rural Tourism organisations, this year's Congress focused during two days on the following topics:

Representatives of Rural Accommodation and Rural Tourism Organisations from countries all over the world participated. The aim was to break the previous record, set up by the 1st European Congress on Rural Tourism in 2003 with 35 countries.

The official languages was English and Romanian with simultaneous translation.

Registration and participation at the congress was completely FREE of charge.

Pre-congress tour and activities

5-october - Optional for participants arriving before 02:00PM 2-day Study Tour itinerary starting on afternoon from Bucarest, overnight in Sinaia or Brasov; visit Brasov – Bran - Carpathians – Red Lake will be available .

5-October - Optional for participants arriving after 02:00PM 1-day Study Tour itinerary starting, after overnight in Bucharest on 6th-October morning; visit Brasov – Bran - Carpathians – Red Lake will be available .

6th-7th October - Optional "Happy hours": 3 alternative half-day programs in the Neamt county.

10th October - Individually arranged tours in East and Central Romania(by our travel agent)

Logo European Congress on Rural Tourism


Mihai Viteazu street no. 45-47, Piatra Neamt, Neamt 610262, Romania

Sala Polivalenta Piatra Neamt

Agenda & Sessions

7 October 2012
19:00 — 20:00

Inauguration of the Congress

Mr. Dacian Ciolos – Commissioner Agriculture

20:00 —
Day 18 October 2012
9:00 — 9:30

Opening greetings

Sala Polivalenta - Main Hall
9:30 — 11:00

The importance of tourism for rural areas - past and future

Valorisation of local assets and social dynamics through rural tourism in support of generating new economies and opportunities in rural areas.

Speakers: Mr. Klaus Ehrlich - GenSecr Eurogites
Mr. Philippe François – President AMFORHT/ECORISMO
Mr. Petri Rinne - President of ELARD
Ms. Maria Stoian – Honorary President ANTREC

  • Sustainable tourism development
  • Support policies in the past, present, and future
  • Global markets and segments
  • The CAP 2014-2020 and the Common Strategic Framework for rural development
Sala Polivalenta - Main Hall
11:00 — 11:45

Country presentations(2)

Russian Federation: Ms Nataliya Andreeva,
Mr Taras Astakhov
Moldova: Ms. Svetlana Lazar - Antrec Moldova

Sala Polivalenta - Main Hall
11:45 — 12:15

Coffee break.

12:15 — 13:30

Innovative concepts and products in Rural Tourism

Focus on the  “touristic” side of RT - new ideas for looking at rural areas and how to give value to their assets are presented here.

Moderator: Mr. Dragoş Raducan

Speakers: Ms. Katia Sidali – University Göttingen
Mr. Bogdan Serbanescu
Ms. Iolanda Mihalache – President PartNET Mr Linas Zabaliunas – EuroGites Labelling workgroup

  • Changes of paradigms of rural tourism
  • The value of “experience” and how to market it
  • IT tools for thematic products
Sala Polivalenta - Main Hall
13:30 — 15:00

Lunch break; rural exhibitions on premises

15:00 — 16:30

Keeping rural communities and heritage alive through tourism

"Think global - act local": how can rural communities benefit from global trends in tourism

Moderator: Mr. Tiberiu Foris - Transilvania University, prof.univ.dr.

Speakers: Ms. Asnate Ziemele - Lauku Celotajs (LV)
Ms. Olga Sevan – Russian Institute for Cultural Research
Ms. Fouli Papageorgiou – Euracademy

  • challenges of territorial cohesion and poverty reduction in remote or mountain areas
  • rural areas as repository of European cultural identity and heritage
  • local supply chains for small producers
  • rural-urban linkages
  • case study about the above
Sala Polivalenta - Main Hall
16:30 — 17:00

Country presentations (2)

Estonia: Ms. Raili Mengel-Sünt - Maaturism
Ireland: Ms. Margaret Cahill - B&B Ireland

Sala Polivalenta - Main Hall
17:00 — 17:30

Coffee break

17:30 — 19:30

Rural Tourism in the world of Internet and Social Media

Internet and its different applications is changing the communication between providers and clients. How to make best use of these new opportunities for organisation, management, development, and marketing of rural tourism?

Panel: Mr. Hans Embacher - Farm Holidays AT
Mr. Nicholas Hall – SE1 Media, ex-ECT
Mr. Terry Jackson - WelcomeWeb, Project Coordinator
Mr. François-Xavier Peêrs - Project manager TOURISMlink
Mr.Valentin Miron - FNTM, Vice Presindent

  • Consumer-based product design and development
  • Impact and use of ICT for rural tourism organisations and providers
  • The role of Social Media and how to use them efficiently
  • Satisfaction control and benchmarking
  • Open cross-compatible platforms for promotion and management
Sala Polivalenta - Main Hall
Day 29 October 2012
09:30 — 16:30

Thematic Products in Rural Tourism

(field trip with 2.5 hour workshop session “en route”)

  • Group 1 – Greenways
    Disused railway tracks, towpaths, former roads, etc. that are transformed for use by non-motorised traffic: hiking, biking, horse riding, etc.
    “Victoria Lipan” Complex - Tarcău
    Workshop coordinated by European Greenways Federation EGWA
    Coordinator: Ms Mercedes Muñoz
    Panelists: Klaus Ehrlich, Mr. Daniel Mourek, Mr Emili Mató Palós

  • Group 2 – Cultural heritage
    (monasteries, castles, festivities, handcrafts, … )
    Theological Seminar of the Neamţ Monastery – Vânători Neamţ,
    Workshop coordinated by ECOVAST
    Coordinator: Ms. Valerie Carter
    Panelists: Ms. Olga Sevan, Ms. Magadalena Banu, Mr. Nicolae Marghiol, Ms. Steliana Cojocariu

  • Group 3 – Nature
    nature parks, sports, environment, …
    Hotel “Bistriţa” Durău - Ceahlău
    This group leaves at 8:00 am
    Workshop coordinated by Naturfreunde International
    Coordinator: Mr. Christian Baumgärtner
    Panelists: Ms. Carmen Chasovschi, Mr. Andrei Blumer, Ms. Elena Matei, Mr Philippe François, Mr V.Avadanei, (+ 1 RO speaker Salvamont tbd)

  • Group 4 – Gastronomy
    Local food and meals as part of rural heritage across Europe
    “Igloo”, Cozla mountain – Piatra Neamţ
    Workshop coordinated by Tourism and Gastronomy group ATLAS
    Coordinator: Mr. Kevin Fields
    Panelists: Mr. Simão Ravara de Oliveira, Mr. Cristian Gherghiceanu, Mr. Atilla Daragus, Msr. Dragan Laurentiu

Multiple Locations
20:00 —

Closure ceremony and celebration

Final conclusions of the congress and workshops

To be presented already in the ambience and context of the following Congress Dinner and celebration

Formal closure of the Congress

Authorities tbd

Dinner and Celebration


  • nataliya andreeva

    Ministry of Agriculture, Federal Center of the Training&Advise
    Head of Rural Development Department

    Rural Tourism in Russia – Growth Opportunities

    Country: Russia           Contact email: agroadvise@yahoo.com           Phone: +79 055 614 636

    PhD in Economy with more than 20 years of experience in rural development.

    National and International Adviser of diversification of activities in rural areas, rural tourism and entrepreneurship development. As UNDP Project manager contributed to establishment of the first Rural Tourism Center in the North Caucasus. Advised the establishment of the Rural Advisory Centers and development of the rural tourism in Uzbekistan, Georgia, Turkmenistan, and Tajikistan. Organizer of the First International Rural Tourism Forum in Russia in June 2012.

  • christian baumgartner

    Naturefriends International
    General Secretary

    Workshop coordination 'Thematic Products in Rural Tourism - Nature'

    Country: Austria           Contact email: christian.baumgartner@nf-int.org           Phone: +43-1-8923877

    Dr. Christian Baumgartner studied landscape ecology and is Secretary General of Naturefriends International (www.nf-int.org) since 2005. 1995 he founded respect - Institute for Integrative Tourism and development (www.respect.at). Besides his work as lecturer in Vienna, Krems (A) and China he is member of the Tourism Sustainability Group within the EU Commission, DG enterprise and member in several national and international tourism related advisory boards.

    Christian Baumgartner is specialized in development, implementation and monitoring of sustainable tourism and sustainable regional development and guided several concrete tourism development projects in Europe and south-east Asia. Actually he is very engaged in the sustainable tourism development of the middle and lower Danube, including the Danube Delta. He is board member of the Danube Competence Centre in Belgrade / Serbia.

    Furthermore Christian Baumgartner is part of the advisory boards of the Austrian and the European eco-labels for tourism accommodation and the one for tour offers, PAN park verifier (www.panparks.org) and several other bodies.

  • andrei blumer

    Association of Ecotourism in Romania,

    Ecotourism destinations a tool for sustainable rural development

    Country: Romania          Contact email: andrei.blumer@eco-romania.ro           Phone: +40 723 186 016

    Trained both in environmental sciences and leisure, Andrei Blumer has developed his expertise in outdoor recreation, protected areas and local community development through ecotourism.
    He worked as an ecotourism officer in one of the largest conservation project in Central and Eastern Europe: Carpathian Large Carnivore Project (1999 - 2003), assisting local development through ecotourism based on the charismatic species of wolves, bears and lynx in traditional region of the Romanian Carpathians. The ecotourism results of CLCP were selected by the World Tourism Organisation to represent Romania in the World Best Ecotourism Guidebook compiled in 2002.
    He is one of the founders and the current president of the Association of Ecotourism in Romania (AER) since 2003. He gained extensive practical experience in the field of ecotourism, assisting for more than 10 years protected areas, small scale businesses in tourism and ecotourism destinations in the region of Carpathians (Romania and Ukraine), Danube region (Danube Protected Area Network) and Black Sea region (Turkey). He has acquired know-how in developing ecotourism certification schemes in Romanian (Eco-Romania ), at the European level (European Ecotourism Labelling Standards - EETLS) and in Botswana (BEST).
    He enjoys nature and outdoor activities and he loves to share his experience with other people either as a photographer or as a guide.

  • margaret cahill

    B&B Ireland,

    Be at the heart of it all…. in IRELAND

    Country: Ireland          Contact email: mmcahill@btinternet.com           Phone: +447900888387

    My career has been in the tourism industry representating Ireland in all the main overseas markets around the world. Having retired a few years ago I joined the Board of B&B Ireland and now serve as the Chairperson.
    B&B Ireland is the representative and marketing company for the bed and breakfast accommodation sector in Ireland. We have members in every county in the country. We provide a reservation service, full IT training and support, as well as marketing the product at home and to the international markets.

  • valerie carter


    Heritage Tourism - a New Life for Rural Areas

    Country: United Kingdom           Contact email: carter73@btinternet.com           Phone: +441580762379

    I am a qualified Town Planner and a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society. I have worked as as Town Planner for a UK County Council; a Business Adviser for the Council for Small Industries in Rural Areas. I then became an Economic Development Officer for the Rural Development Commission of England; becoming Area then Regional Manager for South East England. I transferred to be Rural Director of the new Regional Development Agency until 2010.

    I am a member of the South East Rural Towns Board.

    In Europe, I am a member of the European Rural University; the PREPARE Organising Group; I sit on the Board of CIVILSCAPE; and I am President of the European Council for the Village and Small town (ECOVAST). In all of these fields I have undertaken research on populations, well-being, economies, heritage and service standards in rural areas with a particlar focus on small rural towns.

  • carmen chasovschi

    University Stefan cel Mare, Suceava
    Associate Professor

    Relevant Stakeholders and Structures in Sustainable Management of Rural Destinations.

    Country: Romania           Contact email: carmenc@seap.usv.ro           Phone: +40 230 522 978

    Carmen Chasovschi has graduated in tourism in 1995 and has a PhD in Human Resources Management since 2004. She has attended in Germany at internship programs in event- and front-office management and has achieved additional knowledge in development of tourism destinations with participatory approach in Japan.
    She was involved in setting up several destination management associations in Romania, and the federation of Romanian destination management organizations (FAPT www.federatia-turism.ro) and is actively involved in the management of Bucovina Tourism Association. Since 2001 Carmen has worked as project manager and consultant for GIZ (German International Cooperation Agency) in Romania and as short time expert in Ukraine, Croatia and Serbia.
    She is teaching tourism at the University Stefan cel Mare of Suceava, Romania, is member in certification board of Ecotourism Association Romania and works as consultant and trainer in tourism for national and international organizations.

  • attila daragus

    ANTREC Covasna
    Vice President

    Gastronomy Workshop

    Country: Romania           Contact email: dar@planet.ro           Phone: +40744380000

    Dr.ing.Daragus Attila's interest from childhood is the tourism activity, culinary and cooking techniques, forming career in this direction, engineering profession, obtaining a Ph.D in 2010.

    Founding member of ANTREC Romania in 1996, of ANTREC Covasna in 2006

    Since 1996 has been Vicepresident of ANTREC Romania, President ANTREC Romania, President ANTREC Covasna, Mayor Turia Covasna, Lecturer at the University of Agronomic Sciences and Veterinary Medicine Bucharest.

    Is the owner of two boarding houses, a hotel and two restaurants.

    Organizer of several cultural festivals and national and international cuisine, holding several World records

  • laurentiu dragan

    Pension „Mama Cozonacilor”,

    Gastronomy Workshop

    Country: Romania           Contact email: office@mamacozonacilor.ro           Phone: +40744914182

    I studied law at the University of Oradea 2002, then attended the National School Master of Political and Administrative Studies, Faculty of Communication David Ogilvy, International Project Management section 2003, graduate of business management training course organized by THR tourism Bucharest 2004 participant at the training DEVELOPING SUSTAINABLE RURAL TOURISM part of the TRANSRURAL project (Transfer of Euracademy Learning Packages to Formal Training Systems in the Rural Europe) undertaken by CCI Training Center Brasov with (NOR), Norton Radstock Colledge (UK), Euracademy Association (GR)2005.

    I am a founding member of ANTREC in Brasov, currently vice president, I participated as volunteer in projects run by local and international NGOs since 1998. Currently administrator of the pension Mama Cozonacilor (Bran).

  • klaus ehrlich

    General Secretary

    50 years of rural tourism - a personal experience

    Country: European Union           Contact email: general.secretary@eurogites.org           Phone: +4917627749899

    Klaus Ehrlich was born in Germany during the times of post-war “baby boomers”.All his holiday experience since childhood was based on what nowadays is called “rural tourism”, and it has always been at the same time hobby, passion, and finally a profession. Living in Spain since 1986.

    University studies in Economics / Business Administration by University of Siegen (DE). Field study work for research in America/Spain about regional development based con the primary sector in 1985. Finding a big gap between theory and practice, he started to promote practical integrated sustainable tourism projects in the hinterland. Co-founder of the Andalusian rural tourism association RAAR in 1991, active in EuroGites - European Federation of Rural Tourism since 2002 as president and now Secretary General. Involved in several work and advisory groups of the European Commission, active support to the European Tourism Policy since 2010.

  • klaus ehrlich

    Austrian Farm Holidays Association,

    Impact and use of ICT for rural tourism organisations and providers

    Country: Austria           Contact email: h.embacher@farmholidays.com           Phone: +436641327788

    Hans Embacher, 52, is director of the Austrian Farm Holidays Association since 1991 and thus one of the key players in rural tourism in Austria and also in Europe.

    After the studies of business administration and translator/interpreter at the university of Innsbruck/-Austria he graduated in tourism marketing at the renowned University of Surrey/UK (thesis: „Austria’s image as a summer holiday destination“). After the study he gathered pracitical experience with all levels of tourism as a tourism consultant with Edinger Tourism Consultants and Engineers Ltd. in Innsbruck. Today his position in the marketing board of the Austrian National Tourist Board offers valuable overview over the major issues and developments in tourism.

    International consultancy projects in the CEE-countries Poland and Estonia. Lectora¬tes at the University of Linz and at the University College for Agrarian and Environ¬men¬tal Pedagogy in Vienna. Co-author of the tourism-encyclopaedia in 2008.

  • kevin fields

    University of Gloucestershire,
    Senior Lecturer

    Encouraging hoteliers and restaurateurs to promote and serve local food products.

    Country: United Kingdom           Contact email: kfields@glos.ac.uk           Phone: 01242 714485

    Kevin has been lecturing in hospitality and tourism for 22 years. Over the past twelve years his research interests have gravitated towards the gastronomy element of tourism - and its increasing importance as a tourism resource. He is currently serving his second term as chair of the ATLAS special interest group for Gastronomy and Tourism.

    In addition to his main teaching/research role, he has spent a period of each of the last ten years acting as a restaurant inspector for an initiative to encourage hoteliers and restauranteurs to promote and serve local food in a predominantly rural area of England.

  • tiberiu foris

    Transilvania University of Braşov,

    Keeping rural communities and heritage alive through tourism

    Country: Romania           Contact email: tiberiu.foris@unitbv.ro           Phone: +40 745 07 08 06

    University professor, director of the Department of Management and Economic Informatics of Transilvania University from Brasov.

    General director of the School of Management in Tourism (FMT) from Braşov, private school that is providing training for jobs in the fields of rural and hydropathic tourism and food industry at a national level, partner of the National Association of Rural, Ecological and Cultural Tourism, Patronal Organization of the Hydropathic Tourism in Romania, and Food Industry Union Federation in strategic projects financed by POSDRU.(HRD)

    FMT also provides, through a professional body of elite, training, retraining and specialization courses for managers in Romanian tourism.

  • philippe francois


    The sustainable development solution for rural tourism

    Country: France           Contact email: p.francois@francoistourismeconsultants.com           Phone: +33553544900

    Graduated from hotel school in 1975, Philippe FRANCOIS started his career as waiter in a restaurant – some years later he was general manager of a Novotel Hotel in England.

    In 1991 he was in charge of the tourism department of the Chamber of Commerce of Bordeaux and in 1987 he created the now renowned Ecole de Savignac (MBA in hospitality management).

    Since 1994, as international expert and consultant (UNWTO-UNDP-UNEP-WB-ILO-EU-…), he runs FRANCOIS-TOURISME-CONSULTANTS, a leading consultancy company in hospitality and tourism, specialized in sustainable development, with his team of 20 international consultants. Philippe is also the President of ECORISMO, the internationals events in environment in tourism and hospitality.

    In 2010, Philippe has been elected President of AMFORHT, the world association for hospitality and tourism education and training. Graduated from the University of Bordeaux (MBA in tourism planning and design) he lectures to numerous universities in the world. Philippe is as well President of the INSTITUTE OF TOURISM STRATEGY, International organisation providing technical assistance to research and education in strategy and tourism development and is Vice-President of the University Polytechnics Institute (IUT) of Perigueux. Philippe and his team published 18 professional books and guides in tourism management since 2000.

  • peers francois

    Project manager


    Country: Belgium           Contact email: fxpeers@ectaa.eu           Phone: +32 484 670 272

    François-Xavier Peers is Master in Engineering and Bachelor in Economics. With almost 20 years of experience applying technology to create innovative business processes in competitive business environments.

    François-Xavier is responsible for the coordination of the Tourismlink Initiative

  • Nicholas Hall

    SE1 Media,
    Managing Director

    Standing out in the Global Tourism Market Place

    Country: United Kingdom           Contact email: nick.hall@se1media.com           Phone: +44 20 7193 1003

    Nick has extensive experience working in the European tourism industry and is known in particular for his thought leadership in e-marketing, giving input to destination marketing strategies having worked extensively with a range of city and national tourism organisations.

    Over the past ten years, Nick gained a wealth of experience as a tourism marketer, acting as the European Travel Commission's (ETC) Executive Director, leading ETC to develop a completely new strategy, whilst helping the organisation to gain the highest level of political recognition by international partners.

  • terry jackson

    Project Coordinator

    Rural Tourism in the world of Internet and Social Media

    Country: United Kingdom           Contact email: terry.jackson@welcomeweb.info           Phone: +4407770574130

    1988 – 2003 Joint publisher of the national tourism newspaper for Wales UK.

    2000 – Publisher of the Staying in Wales website introducing spatial search.

    2008 – Publisher of the Wales.info web platform for developing spatial search.

    2011 – Introduction of the WelcomeWeb scheme to encourage micro tourism businesses to improve their own branded web presence.

    2012 – Introduction of the Wales UK national tourism platform.

    Entrepreneur who firmy believes that destination management is the most powerful and only marketing tool available to public-funded Destination Management Organsisation (DMOs).

  • elena matei

    Research Center for Regional Analysis in Tourism,Bucharest University

    Workshop Nature

    Country: Romania           Contact email: cartedd@g.unibuc.ro           Phone: 0213 143 508

    PhD in geography, Bucharest University, Faculty of Geography, teaches: ecotourism, sustainable development and tourism, ecology of tourism services.
    Director of Research Center for Regional Analysis in Tourism, Environment and Sustainable Development, Faculty of Geography, Bucharest University.
    Member of Science for the Carpathian (S4C) Board since 2008, responsible for tourism issues and network (see Mountain Research Initiative). Director or team member of/in several research projects financed by Romania National Council of Scientific Research in Higher Education, 2002-2010, POSDRU, 2011-2012.
    Author and co-author of several books about tourism, environment and many papers in peer review journals. Member of editorial board or advisory board for several international journals: Geographica Pannonica (http://www.dgt.uns.ac.rs/english/pannonica.html), SAJTH (http://www.sajth.com/index.html) Turizam (http://www.dgt.uns.ac.rs/english/turizam/engindex.htm).

  • raili mengel

    NGO Estonian Rural Tourism Organisation,
    Chairman of the Board

    Country: Estonia           Contact email: raili@maaturism.ee           Phone: + 372 5622 2500

    My first work experience goes back to 1994, when I worked in hotel in reception. During years 2000-2008 we had our family business in tourism - Holiday home. In 2007 I became member of council of ERTO as a representative Western part of Estonia. In 2008 I agreed to become manager of ERTO, but temporarily and now I can say that I work for this organisation already the fourth year. I like what I do and for who I do it. So, today I am at the same time Manager of our organisation and also Chairman of the Board.

  • munoz mercedes

    European Greenways Association,

    Greenways for Sustainable Tourism

    Country: Spain           Contact email: direction@aevv-egwa.org           Phone: +34 911511098 /+ 34 619755775

    European Greenways Association (EGWA), was created in 1998 (Namour/Belgium), with the aim of spreading and promoting greenways in Europe.

    EGWA contributes towards the preservation of infrastructures such as disused railway or towpaths, to develop, along them, non-motorized itineraries; encourages the use of non-motorized transport for daily mobility and leisure, and promotes the exchange of good practices.

    Currently 42 organisations members from 11 countries support EGWA. From 2009 is managed from the executive office in Madrid.

  • iolanda mihalache

    PartNET Association ,

    A strategic tool for the tourism industry

    Country: Romania           Contact email: office@partnet.ro           Phone: +40 314 256 426

    Project Manager - Strategic project “Strategic instruments for occupation in the tourism industry”,
    Executive Director - MONDO Consulting & Training – Bucharest,
    Associate Professor - Academy of Economic Studies of Bucharest, Faculty of International Economic Relations,
    Communcation Manager - Strategic project “Development of human resources in pre-school education”,
    National Coordinator for the WINNER project - Coordinating in Romania the international project WINNER of developing female entrepreneurship and strenghtening the economical international relations between the companies run by women, developed by the international organization DEVNET and by UNDP/UNIFEM.

    Doctorate in economics „Financing the international projects and the globalisation”, Faculty of International Business and Economics, Bucharest University of Economics,
    Specialization in "Managing and Administating the Comunitary Affairs Management Faculty", Bucharest University of Economics.

  • valentin miron

    FNTM ,
    Vice President

    Rural Tourism in the world of Internet and Social Media

    Country: Romania           Contact email: turism@fntm.ro           Phone: +40 21 210 0852

    Mr. Miron worked as Director of the Program Implementation Division within the Ministry of Public Administration. Since 1997, as co-founder and vice-president of the National Foundation of Young Managers – FNTM In 1998, he was awarded Honorary Mayor-President of the City/Parish of Baton Rouge, LA. , Co-founded the VMB Partners SA in 1999 Since 2011, Mr Valentin Miron has been managing a national strategic project: “Entrepreneurs in tourism – Guesthouses in Romania”, implemented by FNTM in cooperation with ANTREC and ASAJA Spain. The project aims are to stimulate tourism entrepreneurship and to develop a community of tourism entrepreneurs and guesthouses managers. The project launched and developed the booking website www.cazarelapensiune.ro ( www.bookingromania.net ), dedicated to guesthouses, related tourism businesses and tourists.

  • daniel mourek

    Czech Environmental Partnership,
    Greenway Affairs Manager

    Cycle Friendly Service Network – Cyclists Welcome

    Country: Czech Republic           Contact email: daniel.mourek@nap.cz           Phone: +420 736 747 361

    Daniel has been active as Central and East European Greenways coordinator at the Czech Environmental Partnership foundation (Nadace Partnerství, Prague) for more than a decade.
    He is currently also Vice president of the European Cyclist’s Federation (www.ecf.com) and steering committee member of the European Greenways Association www.aevv-egwa.org.
    He represents NGO´s on CEE level in steering committee of the European GreenBelt initiative.
    On national level he is member of Czech cycling strategy team (CzechMobil) coordinating long distance greenways and cycle routes (such as Elbe Trail, Iron Curtain Trail or EuroVelo routes) in the Czech Republic and CEE as well as member of Prague cycling committee.
    His background is in sustainable tourism development, he studied Prague School of Economics (tourism) and University of Berne (sustainable tourism development)

  • simao oliveira

    Polytechnic Institute of Leiria,
    Assistant Professor

    Gastronomy as Tourist Attraction of a Destination

    Country: Portugal           Contact email: simao_oliveira@ipleiria.pt           Phone: +351262783607

    Since 2011 - finalizing the PhD thesis about wine tourism routes (Extremadura University – Spain);
    2010 - Degree of Advanced Studies in Business Management and International Commerce (Extremadura University – Spain);
    2008 – Master in Management and Development in Tourism (Aveiro University – Portugal);
    2004 – Bachelor in Management and Planning in Tourism (Aveiro University – Portugal).

    Since 2006 – Assistant Professor in the Polytechnic Institute of Leiria (Portugal), teaching subjects in the tourism, economics and management areas (Tourism Economy, Strategic Planning in Tourism, New Products in Tourism, Gastronomic Heritage, Gastronomy and Wine, Cultural Tourism among others).
    Director of the Technology Specialization Course in Recreation Management and Coordinator from the research study “Gastronomy Tourism in the Touristic Development Pole of the Western Region”.
    Associated Member from GITUR – research group in tourism;
    2005 – 2006 – Assistant Professor in the Polytechnic Institute of Bragança (Portugal), teaching subjects in the tourism area (Hotel Management, Cultural Tourism, New Products Development);
    2003-2004 – Researcher and advisor in ATAHCA Association (Portugal), in a project collecting local gastronomy, traditions, cultural aspects and how they could be used for tourism proposes in rural spaces.

  • fouli papageorgiou

    Managing Director

    Rural cultural heritage and tourism: a paradigm of cross-fertilisation

    Country: Greece           Contact email: foulipapageorgiou@prismanet.gr           Phone: +31210 7525660

    Fouli Papageorgiou, holds a degree in Architecture (Athens-GR) and a Ph.D. in Urban and Regional Studies (Birmingham-UK). She is a founding member and President of Euracademy Association and the Managing Director of PRISMA-Centre for Development Studies. Over the past 20 years she has led a large number of local development studies, structure plans and regional plans, mostly in rural areas; and has conducted research in several aspects of rural tourism, including ecotourism and cultural tourism. She has also coordinated over 20 EU projects mostly on rural development, focusing on issues of rural tourism, rural cultural heritage, education and training for rural development and rural policies. She has also taught and conducted research in the universities of Aston in Birmingham, Leeds, Edinburgh and Athens, and has published numerous articles and books, including eight Thematic Guides on various aspects of Sustainable Rural Development.

  • dragos raducan

    Vice President

    Moderator, Innovative concepts and products in Rural Tourism

    Country: Romania           Contact email: dragos.raducan @ rezex.ro           Phone:+40 744 544 056

    Doctor of Agricultural Sciences, Master in Agronomy and Master in Ecotourism, Chair of the Romanian County Tourism, Hotels and Restaurants Sector and Vicepresident of Romanian Tourism Employers Federation.

    Associate professor at the Romanian-American University, Faculty of Economics and International Tourism. Trainer and assessor for tourism occupations.

    Owner and CEO of REZEX, online booking system.

  • petri rinne


    How could LEADER best support rural tourism?

    Country: Finland           Contact email: petri.rinne@elard.eu           Phone: +358 40 555 3232

    Petri Rinne has worked as a LEADER Local Action Group Manager in the South-West of Finland since 2001. In addition, he has been consulting in LEADER method dissemination to many EU candidate countries, new Member States, Russian Carelia, the Republic of South Africa and Mozambique. In 2011-12 he also holds the presidency of the European LEADER Association for Rural Development (ELARD).

    ELARD is an international non-profit making association set up to improve the quality of life in rural areas and to maintain their population through sustainable, integrated local development.

    Petri Rinne's academic interest is in local economic impacts of rural tourism. He is also preparing his doctoral thesis for the University of Tampere on this topic.

  • olga sevan

    Russian Institute for Cultural Research,
    Head of Department

    Country: Russian Federation           Contact email: ecovast@rambler.ru           Phone: +79036631017

    Dr. of Architecture (Moscow Architectural Institute);
    Head of the Department for the “Cultural Environment of Settlements” in Russian Institute for Cultural Research (Moscow);
    Membership: Union of Russian Architects; ICOMOS - CIVVIH and CIAV;
    President of the Russian Committee for the Village and Small Town – ECOVAST; Association of European Open Air Museums;
    Coauthor of the General plan, Sectors of the Open Ear Museum “Malye Korely” in Archangelsk, 20 restoration projects etc. O.S. took part in Russian and International projects, conferences, workshops, training courses, etc;

    Publications: 4 monographs, 130 issued in Russia, Europe etc. (www.ecovast.ru and www.ecovast.ru/sevan_en.htm)

  • katia sidali
    Katia Laura

    University of Gottingen,
    Post-doc researcher

    How do different actors create valuable tourism? Linking tourism research and tourism praxis: interdisciplinary perspectives

    Country: Germany           Contact email: ksidali@gwdg.de           Phone: +4917627749899

    Katia Laura Sidali is post-doctoral researcher at the Georg-August University of Göttingen, Department of Agricultural Economics (Germany). Her research focuses on marketing of food, specialties and niche-markets, consumer behaviour, agri-leisure and communication strategies in tourism, conventional and alternative agrifood chains and quality labelling analysis.

    She is a member of the German Society of Tourist Studies (www.dgt.de/), of the Italian Society of Agricultural Studies (http://www.aissa.it/societa.php) and of the Editorial Advisory Board of the International Hospitality Student Journal (http://www.sturesearch.ch/).

    She is editor of the book “Food, Agri-Culture & Tourism” (2011, Springer) and author of several articles published in peer-review journals

  • maria stoian

    ANTREC România,
    Honorary President

    Innovative concepts and products in Rural Tourism

    Country: Romania           Contact email: maria.stoian@gmail.com           Phone: +40723350892

    President and Founder of Antrec Romania
    President of Eurogites (1997-1999)
    Former Board Member of Asta, IAERT, SKAL Club, ANFMR.
    Teaches linking subjects to rural tourism and agrotourism.( Marketing, Management, European rural tourism etc.) at „Dimitrie Cantemir” Christian University, Economic Studies Academy, University of Agronomic Sciences.
    Works with trainers from tourism industry.
    Participant of many Conferences and Congresses from all over the world since 1994.
    Author and co-author of several books.

    In 2004 she founded the monthly magazine „Vacante la tara”, aimed at those who want more than a regular holiday.

  • bogdan serbanescu

    Training programs coordinator

    Questions to which is difficult to answer

    Country: Romania           Contact email: serbanescu.bogdan@gmail.com           Phone: +40 744 272 215

    free lance trainer, coach and consultant . Leading TA groups in Romania and delivering TA trainings abroad (Ukraine, Poland, Greece and Turkey). Member of the training team of ICDTA (UK). Training programs coordinator. writer of soft skills courses

    Doctoral degree in education. Master degree in Psychology.

    • over 70 articles published in Romanian and international magazines and newspapers, including the UNESCO network.
    • About 20 articles published in electronic magazines (domestic).
    • 11 workshops delivered at domestic and international conferences and congresses, including TA workshops at TA conferences.
    • 1 book on education.

  • linas zabaliunas

    Lithuanian countryside tourism association,

    Quality labeling of European rural tourism

    Country: Lithuania           Contact email: linas@atostogoskaime.lt           Phone: +37061420339

    Linas Zabaliunas holds a Masters Degree in International agriculture economics at Lithuanian University of Agriculture.
    10 years of practical experience in inbound tourism in Lithuania.
    President of the Lithuanian countryside tourism association, an independent non-profit organization uniting over 400 members involved in rural tourism in Lithuania. Its main goals are: represent the interests of the Association members at all institutions and organizations; coordinate activities of the Association members in developing and marketing rural tourism as well as promoting travel to Lithuania and the Baltics.

    Professional membership: Board member of the ‘’Eurogites’’, Board member of European association for eco-labels VISIT.

  • asnate ziemele

    Latvian Rural Tourism association,

    Slitere National Park - sustainable tourism destination in practice

    Country: Latvia           Contact email: asnate@celotajs.lv           Phone: +371 29285756

    Mrs. Asnate Ziemele is the president and founder (1993) of the Latvian Rural tourism Association “Lauku celotajs” (Country traveler) - the non-profit professional national association with the purpose of developing and promoting rural sustainable tourism in Latvia.

    She is a professional in the rural tourism - she leads development process as well as commercial activities for Rural tourism in Latvia. She has the experience working as the expert and project manager for several national and European rural tourism development projects.

    Elaborated the National quality and Eco-labelling system for rural tourism accommodations, as well as is the author of the Latvian Rural Tourism Development Target programme. Since 1995 have grate experience on organizing and holding the international and national conferences and seminars for rural tourism issues.

    Professional membership: Board member of the ‘’Eurogites’’, Board member of European association for eco-labels VISIT.


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Strada Mihai Viteazu nr. 45 – 47, Piatra Neamt, Neamt 610262, Romania Tel. +40744219886 Fax. 0333814342, ecrt2012@europeanrtcongress.org

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Organising Committee

Name Role Tel
Bogdan PUSCASU Head of the Organising Committee +40 723 209 208
Gabriela MACOVEIU Programme +40 745 616 717
Andrei BACIU Website management +40 748 336 414
Nicoleta HUSARIU Public Relations +40 723 180 934
Mihai CHIRUC Accommodation +40 722 379 559
Doina ANGHEL Tours +40 744 631 661
Mihai CARAVAN Logistics +40 723 552 280
Anca AFLOAREI Finances +40 724 280 456
Sorina BULAI Arrivals/Departures  +40 722 455 461
Elisabeta GHERCA Secretariate & Welcome Desk +40 744 219 886

Our Sponsors

Eurogites Antrec Unwto European Union Ministerul Dezvoltarii si Turismului Europe in my region Primaria Piatra Neamt Consiliul Judetean Neamt Camera de Comert Agentia pentru Dezvoltare Regionala Nord-Est