Design Ecological Tourism is a research platform led by Aziza Chaouni out of the Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape and Design. Since 2008, DET has brought together faculty members from the University of Toronto, Ryerson University, international experts, local stakeholders, government officials and graduate students to research collaboratively the challenges faced by ecotourism in the developing world.

Sponsored principally by the Moroccan Ministry of Tourism SMIT, DET research was conducted so far through applied seminars, advanced design studios and in situ summer workshops.

One of the goals of DET is to develop and disseminate transferable tools, strategies and visions for low impact forms of tourism, which safeguard fragile environments and invigorate local economies. Also, DET seeks to not only introduce graduate students to working in developing world contexts, but also to nurture collaborative research environments that combine the 3 design disciplines (architecture, landscape architecture & planning) with ecology, economics and sociology.

In the Winter 2011, RSCN, Jordan (www.rscn.org.jo) will become one of our research sponsors.
DET would like to thank partner school ISITT, which has provided us with the necessary support to develop the marketing and management dimensions of our ecotourism research. DET would also like to thank Daniels Faculty Liat Margolis and Rob Wright, experts from the Moroccan Ministry of Tourism, international experts professor Nina Mary Lister and Chris Johnson, and golf designers Scott Covell and Neil Crafter. Their advice and knowledge have been crucial to the development of DET.

At last, DET projects would not have been able to materialize without the dedication, passion and hard work of students at Daniels all of whom are not included yet in the ‘people’ page of this website: Juan Robles, Fionn Byrne, Jennifer Davis, Fadi Masoud, You-Been Kim, Matthew Brown, Martina Braunstein, Matthew Spremulli, Martin Hogue, Lara Sameniuk, Adam Brander, Celina Lee, Maxwell Kerrigan, Michael Spatafora, Axel Van Chee, Danielle Berwick, Patricia Graham, Jessey Gresley-Jones, Ben Matthews, Erika Richmond, Sanford Riley, Kristin Ross, Dina Sarhane, Arne Suraga, Hanna Tabatabaie, Talib Bashar, Stacie Vos, Brendan Whitsitt, Samar Zarifa, Valerie Tam, Elie Nehme, Sonia-Cristina Basdescu, Stephen Addeo, Danielle Whitley, Nathaniel Addison, Mishal Abidi, Khaled Al Nasser, Gavin Berman, Kate Slotek, Christina Grey, Awais Hamid, Peter Odegaard, Amanda Chong , Louis Liu, Andres Bautista, Utako Tanabe and Vjosana Shkurti.

DET is indebted to Dean Richard Sommer and GSD professor Hashim Sarkis for their support.