Academic journals: Journal of Park and Recreation Administration

Journal summary: The Journal of Park and Recreation Administration (JPRA) is the official publication of the American Academy for Park and Recreation Administration. The Academy is an organization of distinguished practitioners and scholars committed to the advancement of park and recreation administration. The Journal was established by the Academy to bridge the gap between research and practice for administration, educators, consultants, and researchers.
One of the leading journals in the park and recreation industry, JPRA was launched in 1983 to encourage scholarly research and the advancement of knowledge for best management practices and delivery services. JPRA provides a forum for the analysis of management and organization of the delivery of park, recreation, and leisure services. JPRA will publish distinguished original manuscripts that will accomplish the following:
– move theoretical management concepts forward in the field of park and recreation administration
– provide clear implications of theory and research for problem solving and action in park and recreation organizations.

Publisher: Sagamore

Website: https://js.sagamorepub.com/jpra

Access: Subscription; some open access

Journal type: Academic peer-reviewed

Academic journals: Journal of Heritage Tourism

Journal summary: JHT focuses on exploring the many facets of one of the most notable and widespread types of tourism. Heritage tourism is among the very oldest forms of travel. Activities such as visits to sites of historical importance, including built environments and urban areas, rural and agricultural landscapes, natural regions, locations where historic events occurred and places where interesting and significant living cultures dominate are all forms of heritage tourism. As such, this form of tourism dominates the industry in many parts of the world and involves millions of people.
During the past 20 years, the study of tourism has become highly fragmented and specialised into various theme areas, or concentrations. Within this context, heritage tourism is one of the most commonly investigated forms of tourism, and hundreds of scholars and industry workers are involved in researching its dynamics and concepts. This academic attention has resulted in the publication of hundreds of refereed articles in various scholarly media, yet, until now there has been no journal devoted specifically to heritage tourism; Journal of Heritage Tourism was launched to fill this gap.
JHT seeks to critically examine all aspects of heritage tourism. Some of the topics to be explored within the context of heritage tourism will include colonial heritage, commodification, interpretation, urban renewal, religious tourism, genealogy, patriotism, nostalgia, folklore, power, funding, contested heritage, historic sites, identity, industrial heritage, marketing, conservation, ethnicity, education and indigenous heritage.

Publisher: Routledge

Website: https://www.tandfonline.com/toc/rjht20/current

Access: Subscription; some open access

Journal type: Academic peer-reviewed

The US National Parks system as a political pawn causing untold damage

The current Government shutdown in the USA caused by the political dispute over President Trump’s demand for funding for a wall along the US border with Mexico is having significant negative effects on the historic environment and nature conservation of the ‘treasured’ National Parks system, as well as related agencies falling within the realm of the Department of the Interior.

During this shutdown 80% of the employees of the NPS have been furloughed, leaving only skeleton staff mainly for policing and security.

It has been reported that the National Parks Service is losing $400,000 per day by not collecting admissions revenue where parks and heritage sites charge, quite apart from wider revenue lost from concessions, campgrounds, retail and hospitality. There have been widespread reports of significant human health, pollution and threats to nature and ecosystems, with sanitation sites overflowing and litter not being collected. Questions have also been asked on why sites have been left accessible, rather than simply closing the various NPS units/sites altogether.

Maintenance backlogs and acute maintenance/management issues are building due to the impact of weather at this time of the year also. It is not a pretty picture – foremost for the dedicated NPS staff who are not being paid, many of which are trying to keep things going on a voluntary basis, secondly for the long-term damage being done to the natural and cultural resources of the Park System which has been heralded as “America’s Best Idea”, and thirdly for the unfortunate political circumstances whereby the environment (in its broadest form) comes low down in the pecking order when Government faces a crisis.

Free but not easy: raising money for the twilight portfolio of English Heritage sites in care

English Heritage has just launched The Once & Future Fund designed to build an endowment to support specifically the sites looked after by the organisation that don’t have admission charges, shops, cafes or custodians.  This group of free to access sites form the vast majority of the national portfolios of English Heritage (as well as Historic Scotland and Cadw), and therefore tend to be less in the public eye for recognition and visitation. The sites which vary in size from the very small (such as Dunster Butter Cross), through to the very large (like Maiden Castle) are theoretically no less important, though they do, unsurprisingly, fall much further down the pecking order when it comes to investment and maintenance.

The campaign by English Heritage is supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund, through its Heritage Endowments programme, with a HLF commitment to match fund donations up to £1 million. It will dedicate much needed funds and attention on this twilight group of sites which has never received the investment it should have, has never been made the most of within the broader national portfolio, and remains hugely under-interpreted for the visitor. Whilst the dedicated attention and matching commitment by the HLF is to be applauded, it does raise further broader questions about the original £88.5 million ‘endowment’ given to English Heritage / Historic England by Government as part of the English Heritage New Model organisational structure change, particularly around the state of play of reducing the long term conservation backlog for the unstaffed sites with complex needs, and the long-term viability of this part of the national collection which will have to increasingly rely on such fund-raising schemes.

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