By using this site, you agree to the use of cookies.
See our privacy policy for more information. This site uses machine translation, so content is not always accurate. Please note that translated content may differ from the original English page.

  1. Home
  2. [Roundtable Discussion] Realizing Kyoto’s Place as One of the World's Leading Tourism Cities

[Roundtable Discussion] Realizing Kyoto’s Place as One of the World's Leading Tourism Cities

[Roundtable Discussion] Realizing Kyoto’s Place as One of the World's Leading Tourism Cities

How the COVID-19 Pandemic Affected Tourism & Culture and Their Prospects for the Future

The COVID-19 pandemic, which lasted around three years, brought great changes to Kyoto, a city of great culture and one of Japan’s most popular tourist destinations.
This roundtable discussion covered what the situation in Kyoto was like, the challenges that emerged and the changes that came about, as well as what kind of future tourism in Kyoto should be aspired to in this post-Covid world.
The vulnerability of tourism and cultural industries exposed by the Covid pandemic
Culture and tourism see the need for mutual support and compromise
The increasing polarization of budgets: High added value resonates with the wealthy
Preserve, utilize, preserve: Creating a healthy ecosystem for cultural properties
Finding harmony between local communities and tourism
Post-pandemic, where do we direct tourism investment?
Securing and developing the human resources needed for tourism and culture
The message Kyoto needs to send with an eye toward 2030

The vulnerability of tourism and cultural industries exposed by the Covid pandemic

Yamada: Since the summer of 2023, I’ve traveled to North America, Europe, Oceania, and Okinawa, and I feel that tourism has come back in a strong way. But at the same time, I’ve also sensed a different dynamic compared to before COVID. Today, let’s start by discussing what happened in Kyoto during COVID, and how you see the current situation from each of your perspectives.
Uegaki: During COVID, a lot of residents were saying that they were glad that all the congestion and crowding from tourism was gone.
But tourism-related spending in Kyoto is 1.2 trillion yen, and the city gets 39 billion yen in tax revenue, so the tourism industry took a massive hit.
In 2022, 43.61 million people visited Kyoto, which is 18.5% less than in 2019, the year before COVID hit, and the number of visitors staying overnight was 9.69 million, which was an 87.5% increase from 2021. So I’d say tourism has made a considerable return.
The number of passengers on City Buses in July 2023 is down 10% from 2019, and down 7% on subways, which also suggests that visitors are starting to return to a fair degree.
Akahoshi: While Covid put the tourism industry into a crisis of survival as both domestic and foreign tourists disappeared, many companies managed to stay afloat thanks to the help of measures such as generous government subsidies for small- and medium-sized businesses in the industry. However, many non-regular employees also had to be let go. This is just one example, but in the aftermath of the mass retirement of elderly taxi drivers in Kyoto City, we’re currently seeing a decline in the number of taxis in operation due to the driver shortage that has resulted, and this situation has left deep scars.
Yamada: I’d like to ask the two participants from the Agency for Cultural Affairs. These three years of no tourism may have been good in terms of preserving cultural properties, but I also think that there is value in having people see them. What do you think is the actual state of things?
Maruoka: I think that culture-related businesses in general suffered serious damage. In the area of traditional crafts, purchases through tourism came to an abrupt halt, which forced museums and other institutions that had always been dependent on admission fees to rethink their profit structures.
In Germany, there’s a view that culture is like a life-support system, but in Japan, some people have a different take on it, and while such businesses were able to receive support from the Agency for Cultural Affairs, Japan Tourism Agency, and Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare, some businesses are still damaged.
Harasawa: Cultural properties were originally intended to be not only preserved but also utilized, as stipulated in the Act on Protection of Cultural Properties. But on the other hand, during the pandemic, some temples and shrines found it difficult to start repair projects due to a lack of utilization and a sharp drop in revenue from entrance fees. Further compounding the matter is that the artisans who can perform such work are unevenly distributed in certain areas, so the construction work itself comes to a halt in some cases. Apparently some artisans have also decided to close up shop due to a sudden drop in demand for repairs after a year of constant work.
Yamada: Indeed, it’s true that traditional culture and cultural properties are seen as commercial enterprises by the general public. This is in stark contrast to tourism-related businesses such as restaurants and lodging, where it was easy to say, “We’re not getting any customers, so please give us support.”
Maruoka: Culture is like infrastructure in that it exists in a way that many people take for granted. They don’t really notice it until disaster strikes and then it’s gone.
The COVID pandemic really was a crisis for culture.
In the culture industry, for example, a particular artform would have a number of different schools, and that diversity led to a lack of coherence, but when this crisis struck, they formed sort of a coalition.
Harasawa: Against this background, the Agency for Cultural Affairs focused its efforts on supporting things like artists, traditional culture, and festivals during the pandemic.
Photo: Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, people have disappeared from Kyoto's tourist spots. There are no signs of people in Ninenzaka either (photo taken in July 2020).
Akahoshi: In terms of support for the industry, the DMO played the role of a facilitator for the tourism industry for things like conducting mass vaccinations and coordinating the requests of the tourism and restaurant industries as a whole to the government.
I feel that we, as a DMO, expanded our business wing one step further in the way we were able to serve as a unifying force to help not just the tourism industry, but everyone from a wide range of industries, come together and focus their efforts in the same direction. I don’t think we would’ve been able to do that had the pandemic not occurred.
Yamada: What was Kyoto City’s attitude, which was on the receiving end of industry demands, when the tourism that had always been a part of life there suddenly came to a halt?
Uegaki: The need for a code of conduct to bolster the principles of those involved in tourism was included in the “Kyoto Declaration on Tourism and Culture” at the United Nations Conference on Tourism and Culture, held in Kyoto in 2019 and jointly organized by UNWTO and UNESCO. Based on this declaration, in 2020, Kyoto City and the Kyoto City Tourism Association (DMO Kyoto) jointly established the “Kyoto Sightseeing Etiquette”, a set of standards of behavior to be upheld by all tourism-related businesses, tourists, and residents in order to realize sustainable tourism in Kyoto. It was a period where we worked together with related industries to solidify the kind of ideas that we should incorporate as we promote Kyoto tourism going forward.
Yamada: I’ve heard of anecdotes about how cities overseas made the most of their time during the pandemic when there was no tourism by getting input from residents and businesses and reformulating their management plans.
Since the beginning of the 21st century, international travel has expanded rapidly and tourism is seen as an industry with unshakable growth, but no one could have imagined there would be such a division. How did the UNWTO see things?
Oya: Indeed, tourism in the pre-Covid era grew faster than expected due to the growth of developing countries, and many popular tourist destinations were experiencing conflicts with problems like conflicts with residents and destruction of the natural environment. But then in 2020, all travel suddenly stopped and we all experienced a world without tourism. This made it clear how vulnerable the tourism industry is, and I believe that it spurred a common understanding throughout the world of the need for sustainable and resilient tourism.
At one point the number of tourists worldwide decreased by more than 80%, and while extensive economic support was available in Japan, tourism industries in some developing countries weren’t able to rely on support from their own governments. From the perspective of protecting the industry, the UNWTO first tried to raise priority of tourism industory at the beginning of the pandemic. Our Secretary-General met with the Director-General of the WHO (World Health Organization) and encouraged governments to keep their decision-making based on scientific evidence and not restrict travel beyond what was necessary.
Since travelers aren’t keen on traveling to a particular country if they don’t know the situation there, UNWTO created a comprehensive data set that allowed them to see the measures being taken by each country.
Yamada: We relied on that information from the UNWTO as well. Inbound tourism is finally starting to come back, but after the disconnect caused by the COVID pandemic, I feel like we’re living in sort of a different world now.
Oya: While Japan continued strict boarder measures  for a full two years, tourist numbers in Europe started picking back up again in the latter half of 2021. At the start of 2023, the world as a whole was at 84% of its pre-Covid levels, with Asia also recovering rapidly and the Middle East growing the fastest, having reached 120% of its pre-Covid level.
The pre-Covid thesis was all about sustainable, inclusive, and resilient tourism. Things seem to be recovering well when you look at the numbers, but right now we’re also having to deal with inflation, as well as geopolitical risks such as Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the Israel-Palestine conflict.
Yamada: What has changed at the Agency for Cultural Affairs over the past two or three years?
Maruoka: In May of 2020, when we were in the midst of the pandemic, the Cultural Tourism Promotion Act was enacted in an effort to communicate the value of culture and provide proper financial returns to those who bear that culture, thereby making it more sustainable. I’m quite glad to see that the Japan Tourism Agency also has a policy to create sustainable tourism regions. Due to the forced shutdown caused by the pandemic, the consensus is that the region as a whole is important, and that includes its culture. I see that as a positive change.
Harasawa: Once a national treasure or important cultural property is lost, it’s gone forever. There’s a need to make them more resilient from a range of perspectives. For example, despite having survived in the past, more than 200 nationally designated cultural properties throughout Japan have been damaged just this year because of natural disasters, which are becoming more frequent and also more severe.
But at the same time, even in a society with a declining birthrate and aging population, the number of cultural property designations keeps increasing year after year.
In order for society as a whole to continue supporting these cultural properties, it’s important to have a common understanding that they can also be tourism resources and should be preserved for the future. I think that the current state of things is that we’re capable of addressing the various issues facing these cultural properties if tourism and cultural administrations work together to undertake cultural tourism initiatives.

Culture and tourism see the need for mutual support and compromise

Maruoka:The COVID pandemic has made many people in the culture industry realize how much they’ve been supported by tourism. I think it was an opportunity to bring together many people who had previously seen tourism in a negative light and had kept their distance from it. Since the pandemic subsided, the relationship between the tourism and culture industries has improved, and I really feel that the culture side is becoming more open to compromise.
Yamada: Cultural properties are seen as things to be preserved, while tourism is seen as a form of consumption, but in the wake of the pandemic, we realized that when people stop coming, it becomes difficult to preserve them. Having that flow of people is actually an important part of preserving them, and I think there’s now a mutual understanding that tourism is what drives the flow of people to cultural properties.
Maruoka: Indeed. Furthermore, the more different a culture is, the more interesting it is for tourism. When people experience something from a different culture, the more they find it interesting and the more likely they are to pay a fair price for the experience. This means that people from abroad are more likely to appreciate the value of the culture, and I believe that there’s a growing consensus on the idea that culture and tourism go hand in hand.
Uegaki: Kyoto City has actually been aiming for quality over quantity and sustainable tourism since before the pandemic hit. However, while they keep stressing that sustainability is important, there were times when they leaned more in favor of consumption. Then the whole situation was reset and the “Kyoto Sightseeing Etiquette” was created, which I think has been a major factor in setting a direction in which not only the government but also residents, tourists, and tourism-related businesses could all take proactive efforts to promote sustainable tourism.
Akahoshi: Another thing that changed because of the pandemic is, in a good way, that resistance to digital technology has suddenly diminished. For example, there was a tendency in Kyoto to think that taking reservations at temples in advance or online was uncouth, but a paradigm shift occurred in response to demands to avoid crowding and limit activities to a planned schedule. I don’t think measures to control demand in advance would have made much progress had it not been for something like the Covid pandemic.

The increasing polarization of budgets: High added value resonates with the wealthy

Yamada: In Kyoto, there is paid spectator seating set up at festivals and other events to ensure proper circulation of funds. It’s become quite clear that there are a lot of customers who are willing to spend money even on things that could be had for free if it means deeper enjoyment, and I feel that there’s been a polarization of budgets since the pandemic hit.
Akahoshi: The people who bought those premium seats for the Gion Festival were wealthy people, after all. They’re willing to pay a price for things with a certain value, and they’re also willing to pay for things that are new and inspiring. I also think that the weak yen makes it seem a bit less expensive.
Yamada: Accommodations in Kyoto range from large-scale to private lodging, but is there a difference in their usage before and after the pandemic?
Akahoshi: When the number of private lodging facilities increased, there must have been a certain level of operation, but then Kyoto City created the “Additional Regulations” (ordinances placing regulations on businesses in residential-only areas, requiring the presence of managers, etc.), which resulted in the eradication of illegal private lodging facilities and thus a decrease in the total number of accommodation facilities.
Since then, the total number of facilities has slightly declined after peaking in 2021, though the number of accommodations in the higher price range has increased somewhat.
Yamada: Higher-priced accommodations place more of a focus on things like environmental concerns and enhanced security. I feel that the values sought after by high-income earners with high education and social status are beginning to appear in the market more strongly.
What kind of initiatives is the Agency for Cultural Affairs strengthening in response to these changes?
Harasawa: First of all, I think the fact that the Agency for Cultural Affairs came to Kyoto is a big change. Kyoto has been highlighted as an area with advanced tourism issues, but it’s most definitely a place rich with cultural properties, and we ourselves learn about the culture as we go about our everyday lives. Kyoto has a wonderful system for protecting and preserving cultural properties for the next generation while also inviting people to come and enjoy them. The World Heritage sites of Nijo Castle and Ninnaji Temple, as well as more modern buildings such as banks and schools, are remarkable examples of such efforts. What the Agency for Cultural Affairs wants to do is expand the use of such facilities throughout Japan in a way that’s compatible with the preservation of the value of cultural properties, including early-morning and nighttime use, use as unique venues, and renovation into accommodation and visitor facilities. Cultural properties can be said to be the goal of curiosity for wealthy inbound visitors, so we communicate the value of the land and buildings while broadening their perspectives, such as by comparing them to cultural aspects of foreign countries like architectural styles. We want to move forward with initiatives that will help people contribute to their preservation.
Maruoka: Under these circumstances, what we want to emphasize to those on the tourism side is the importance of being aware of how to make the most of the revenue. Some kind of traceability, a way to make known where and how the money received from customers will be used for cultural properties, would help attract even more customers. Conversely, on the cultural side, we tell them that increasing revenue isn’t a bad thing, and that there are endless ways to increase income, such as looking overseas or developing and selling attractive content. We’re working with the Japan Tourism Agency to make this happen in many regions, by means such as using paid booth seating and non-public areas that are intended to be preserved.

Preserve, utilize, preserve: Creating a healthy ecosystem for cultural properties

Uegaki: The Kyoto City Tourism Association ran a project for the 2023 Gion Festival in which they sold premium spectator seating to foreign visitors for 400,000 yen. Kyoto City would like to continue its efforts to collect funds from property owners and those who support our efforts and use those funds to preserve cultural properties in order to pass on Kyoto’s culture and history. However, finding proper ways to manage high value-added content is certainly a challenge.
Akahoshi: This cyclic “preserve, utilize, preserve” process is important, isn’t it? We at the DMO and Convention Bureau regret having only reported on examples of the use of cultural properties in the past, but if it makes known that revenue from the utilization of cultural properties through tourism is meaningfully used for restoration projects, it will help to visualize the benefits of tourism.
Maruoka: When disseminating successful cases, if only the utilization part is cut out, there is a risk of misunderstandings spreading, like that it’s okay to just make use of temples, or collect as many donations as possible, or that charging high prices will work, and that creates a risk of confusion. So what we should be doing is carefully conveying this cycle of preservation to utilization, utilization to preservation, and tying it to reinvestment to create a cyclic process.
Yamada: In a sense, Kyoto has become what it is today because of this cycle. For example, money brought in by temples and shrines went to businesses that perform landscaping and building maintenance, and that got the local economy moving. However, as the scale of tourism grows and commercial consumption becomes its own thing separate from the local economy, if this isn’t given back as reinvestment, people who originally valued the relationship with the local community will become dissatisfied, like they had been taken for a ride, and that leads to a negative attitude toward tourism.

Finding harmony between local communities and tourism

Akahoshi: Tourism issues in Kyoto have been apparent since around 2018, with residents voicing concerns about there being too many tourists and crowding on buses, and wanting something to be done about it. That’s why we’ve been working together with the city of Kyoto to initiate measures to address tourism issues, and one of these measures is the production of a booklet to visualize the effects of tourism. However, we feel that this alone is not enough, and that there’s also a need to more strongly emphasize the benefits that the tourism industry offers in terms of employment, such as various ways of working and acquiring diverse skills in the industry.
Uegaki: We all have a common understanding that tourism is one of Kyoto’s major industries, but we also want to maintain a sense of harmony with the residents. That’s why we’re putting “Kyoto Sightseeing Etiquette” at the forefront of our efforts and working on diversifying the periods, times, and places that people travel, as well as educating people about sightseeing etiquette before they arrive and during their stay.
With regard to the dissemination of information overseas, Kyoto City and DMO Kyoto are raising awareness of manners and etiquette through their overseas information dissemination centers, but we don’t have any information dissemination centers in China, so information there is being disseminated with assistance from the JNTO (Japan National Tourism Organization).
Yamada: Similar problems exist throughout the world, and it’s true that tourism can’t thrive if there isn’t harmony with the community. On the other hand, there’s also a shared recognition of tourism’s importance as an engine of the economy. However, although tourism-driven consumption is ostensibly increasing, there’s also a fear that cases of the economic effects not circulating through the local community will become more extreme in the future.
Maruoka: When we organize things in a matrix in terms of the visible and invisible and the tangible and intangible, the world of things that cannot be seen is increasing, and it can be surmised that there’s a need to find ways to develop the invisible and tangible things (mechanisms and systems), and the invisible and intangible things (values and ethics).

Post-pandemic, where do we direct tourism investment?

Yamada: In Europe, the issue of overtourism has been pointed out for quite some time, and I think now that tourism is coming back again, so has the criticism.
What is your approach as the UNWTO?
Oya: A common challenge worldwide is the concentration of tourists in certain places, such as Kyoto in Japan, Barcelona in Spain, and Rome and Venice in Italy. However, there are many more wonderful villages in these countries to be seen, as well as other destinations in Africa, South America, Asia, and other parts of the world that are still undiscovered but have wonderful nature and unique cultures. UNWTO started a campaign (Tourism Opens Minds) this year on World Tourism Day (September 27th) to encourage people to travel to those kinds of places.
Also UNWTO is promoting investment to increase resilience of tourism destinations. In recent years, green investment (investment in economic activities that take into account environmental issues) has been drawing attentions of investors, but the tourism industry is largely made up of small- and medium-sized businesses. That means that in order for these businesses to meet the green standards that the higher class tourists demands, and for digitalization to proceed in the industry as a whole, the challenge lies in how to allocate investment to small- and medium-sized businesses. And since investment is typically biased toward developed countries, the UNWTO has also created country-specific investment guidelines and helds startup competitions to encourage more investment in developing countries and small- and medium-sized businesses.
Yamada: Diversify investment and develop small- and medium-sized businesses in tandem with DX (Digital Transformation) and GX (Green Transformation): there are cases in the EU where policies like this have been clearly established and implemented.

Securing and developing the human resources needed for tourism and culture

Yamada: With Japan’s aging population, there are fewer baby boomers in terms of both customers and workers, and an even more serious shortage of workers is expected in the future. Does the same apply to Kyoto?
Uegaki: Most definitely. To avoid problems, I think there will be a necessity to make innovations such as allowing diverse work styles and promoting DX (Digital Transformation) to improve operational efficiency. As a matter of fact, there are some businesses that have been able to promote DX and operate with fewer employees as a result of the COVID pandemic. Support for DX is also important.
Akahoshi: Ten percent of Kyoto’s population is students. In the past, students often worked part-time at restaurants and inns, but I hear that recently businesses aren’t hiring students. When the shortage eventually does come, we’re going to have to consider actively seeking workers from other areas, both domestic and international. The lack of people to take on this workload is a pressing issue.
Yamada: I also think that in the field of cultural properties, there’s a need to accumulate personnel with a certain level of experience and skills, rather than a constant stream of part-timers like what happens with restaurants and lodging facilities.
Harasawa: It just so happens that the Agency for Cultural Affairs has been promoting the “Takumi Project” for artisans of cultural properties since 2021. Since Japan’s birthrate is declining and the population is aging, this initiative aims to provide a total support package that includes not just the cultural properties themselves, but also the upstream production of tools and raw materials, as well as technology for protecting cultural properties. We’re trying to support an entire ecosystem for protecting cultural properties, including creating a list of raw materials that are at risk and establishing a national center in Kyoto for repairs.
Akahoshi: But there’s also the fact that the wages for people working in the cultural property and tourism industries are generally pretty low. I still feel that it’s rather difficult to develop human resources unless they can be guaranteed a certain social position and income.
Maruoka: The Agency for Cultural Affairs’ cultural tourism promotion field emphasizes human resource development. For example, museum planners are starting to work together with luxury event management teams to create and sell tourism content and learn from customer feedback. As a result, prices will increase, and if the person acquires the ability to identify ways to reduce costs, they’ll be able to add value to the company, which in turn may lead to a higher salary.
Uegaki: Speaking of the lodging business, a lot of inns have been family-run businesses, and only hire temporary staff during busy periods.
But in the future, it might be a good idea to create a system that provides added value; for example, if you get experience from working at an inn in Kyoto, that could allow you to job-hop elsewhere.
Yamada: There may well be a need for a framework that makes it possible to learn the knowledge and skills needed to solve problems in the field and highly evaluate those who have mastered them.

The message Kyoto needs to send with an eye toward 2030

Yamada: Finally, as we look ahead to the year 2030, please tell us about the future of tourism in Kyoto and what you would like to achieve.
Uegaki: There’s a shortage of float pullers for the Gion Festival, but if visitors from other regions and countries fell in love with Kyoto and visited again and again, perhaps they themselves could carry on the culture, and I think that would be a beautiful thing. The culture of Kyoto wasn’t created solely by the people of Kyoto, but rather it’s been fostered by bringing in strength from outside and by adapting to the trends of the times, and the Yamahoko floats are symbolic of that. My hope is that by 2030, tourism will be one of the engines for creating new culture in Kyoto, and preserving and nurturing the culture that currently exists.
Akahoshi: There’s a venture company that offers agricultural experiences in the Ohara region of northern Kyoto that has teamed up with a newly opened luxury hotel funded by Thai investors. The employees there grow and harvest cilantro in the fields of Ohara, which is then served at the hotel lounge in its cilantro mojitos. By using cilantro in alcoholic drinks rather than in salads or as a condiment, it contributes to local production for local consumption, and they’re also able to charge around 1,000 yen per drink. I thought this was a pretty impressive example of high value-adding. I feel that creating added value in inspired ways like that will become increasingly important when thinking about the future of tourism.
Harasawa: Japan is said to be a developed country facing challenges. Among its challenges, I believe that cultural properties, which exist all over the place in both urban and rural areas, and whose owners and artisans are rapidly aging, are a policy field with a lot to face going forward. In order to pass on these irreplaceable national treasures to future generations, it’s important to build a system that strengthens the sustainability and resilience of these cultural properties. The Kyoto City Tourism Industry is working hard to promote the co-creation of Kyoto’s proud cultural properties by connecting with a wide range of fields in order to pass them on to the future. We’re also sharing what we know with related ministries and agencies, owners of cultural properties, and other related parties to promote development of sustainable presentation and utilization of cultural properties on a nationwide scale. As a result, we’d like to focus our efforts so that by around 2030, cultural properties in Kyoto and elsewhere have been successfully preserved and passed on to the next generation as attractive tourist destinations.
Maruoka: My hope is that Kyoto in the year 2030 will be a good example of what can be achieved, and I hope the city will set a good standard in terms of things like invisible mechanisms, values, and aesthetics. The origin of this lies in people working together beyond their typical positions to create a better whole, much like how a cocktail is made. There used to be divisions between the public and private sectors, and between culture and tourism, but the circumstances of the COVID pandemic brought them closer together, and I really think that things should stay that way. The Agency for Cultural Affairs supports this idea, and I hope that we can keep working in ways that make everyone smile.
Oya: The purpose of the UNWTO is to promote responsible, sustainable, and universally accessible tourism, but how that sustainability is realized invariably differs depending on the destination. In order to realize sustainable tourism, destinations need to strike a balance between the three elements of society: culture, economy, and environment. Today, I learned that a list of cultural properties to be protected has been compiled, and efforts are being made to make this list known to tourists in Kyoto, and I also heard that a system for using tourism revenue to cover the costs of protecting the resources that need to be protected is being established. That’s a great example of the sustainability of the cultural aspects of tourism. In my opinion, the ultimate goal of sustainable tourism is how tourism can contribute to the happiness of the residents. The ideal destination would be the place where tourists come and  the residents are satisfied as it is said in Japan "a place to live and also as a place to visit", and tourists will return home satisfied with their experience there. Kyoto has already starting to get a good cycle going in terms of culture, and my hope is that Kyoto can show itself to the world as an advanced model by 2030. Also, there are cities all over the world struggling with problems caused by irresponsible tourist behavior, so working together with these cities  to send a message for responsible tourism might be a good idea, too.
Yamada: It seems highly likely that the global expansion of "Kyoto Sightseeing Etiquette" will create a new trajectory. Now that movement has become easier and easier, and travel has become more like an extension of everyday life, I believe that if we can update the way people think about tourism and place value on it in society in general, it will lead to solutions to various problems. Thank you all very much for your time today.

*Kyoto Sightseeing Etiquette:
In 2020, the City of Kyoto and DMO Kyoto established the “Kyoto Tourism Code of Conduct (Kyoto Tourism Etiquette):
What Tourism-Related Business Operators and Workers, Tourists, and Citizens Value in Order for Kyoto to Continue Existing As It Is” with the aim of promoting sustainable tourism.
Kotaro Uegaki
Director of Tourism Strategy in the Kyoto City Hall Industry & Tourism Bureau Tourism & MICE Promotion Office. Graduate of the University of Tokyo Faculty of Economics and completed a public policy studies program at the University of Chicago.
He began working for the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism in 2008. After working at the Railway Bureau and other positions, he was temporarily assigned to a position at Kyoto City Hall in July 2022. There, he is engaged in work relating to tourism strategies in Kyoto.
Chiaki Oya
Deputy Chief of the UNWTO Regional Support Office for Asia and the Pacific. Graduate of the University of Tokyo Faculty of Letters and completed a public policy studies program at the University of Chicago. She began working for the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism in 2008. After working for the Japan Tourism Agency (International Relations & MICE), she has been in her current position since July 2022.
Yusuke Harasawa
Specialist in charge of planning for the Agency for Cultural Affairs Cultural Resources Utilization Division. Graduate of the University of Tokyo Faculty of Economics. She began working for the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism in 2018. After working in the City Bureau City Planning Division and the Policy Bureau Regional Transportation Division, he was temporarily assigned to a position at the Agency for Cultural Affairs in July 2022. There, he is involved with legal systems related to cultural properties and policymaking decisions that arise from their relocation to Kyoto.
Naoki Maruoka
Coordinator of Cultural Tourism for the Agency for Cultural Affairs. Graduate of the University of Tokyo Faculty of Economics. He began working for Value Management Co., Ltd. in 2015. He worked to promote tourism-friendly town development in order to pass on the culture and revitalize neighborhoods. From 2017 to 2019, he was temporarily assigned to a position at the Japan Tourism Agency Tourism Resources Division. He has been in his current position since 2021.
Shuhei Akahoshi
Kyoto City Tourism Association (DMO Kyoto) Deputy Secretary General and Deputy Director General of the Kyoto Convention Bureau. Began working for an advertising agency in 1998. Since April 2012, he has been engaged in tourism and MICE promotion policies at the Kyoto Convention Bureau and the Kyoto City Tourism Association.
Facilitator: Yuichi Yamada (Director & Tourism Research Department Manager, Japan Travel Bureau Foundation)
Roundtable discussion photos: Emi Masuda Composition & text: Kaori Nagano (Arika Inc.)

"Tourism Culture" Issue No. 259 Special Feature
***All rights reserved by Japan Travel Bureau Foundation***