On December 13-14, 2012 Moscow hosted the international scientific and practical conference “Professional education in the tourism industry as a criterion for improving the quality of tourist services”. The event was initiated by the Federal Tourism Agency (Rosturizm) and it was held at Radisson SAS Slavyanskaya Hotel. Polylog PR provided organizational and technical support of the event. Besides, it carried out some activities aimed at the conference promotion and development of in-depth business program.

The international conference aimed to discuss and develop a principled position on the creation of an effective system which would provide sound staff development in the tourism industry and help to build interaction between federal and regional authorities.

Rectors from more than 80 national universities, representatives of tourism associations and public authorities took part in the conference. The event was opened by the head of the Federal Tourism Agency, Alexander Radkov, Deputy Minister of Culture of the Russian Federation Alla Manilova, president of the All-Russian Insurance Association,Andrey Kigim and head of the Moscow Tourism Committee, Sergey Shpilko.

The reports on western experience in professional education in the tourism industry were presented by Omar Valdez, executive director at UNWTO. Themis Foundation, Jacqueline Tanti-Dougall, Malta, partner of Jacqueline Tanti Dougall Tanti Dougall and Associates, and Guido Castellini, business development director of Italia Turismo. Maya Lomidze, executive director of the Association of Tour Operators of Russia, Natalia Pirozhenko, IATA and Victor Prasov, managing partner of Alliance Hotel Management raised a serious topic on university and tourism industry interaction.

The first day of the conference ended up with the participants’ unanimous decision to support the establishment of the Interagency Council on staff training in the tourism industry and quality improvement in managing tourist services. The conference resolution contained some recommendations for the presented Concept of continuing education in the tourism industry..

The first extended session of the Interagency Council on staff training in the tourism industry and quality improvement in managing tourist services was held on December, 14. Moreover, the educational training hotel VELES belonging to Russian New University was opened on the second day of the conference.

More than 300 participants and 30 journalists attended the conference. Following the results of the conference, over 50 reports were published in the media.