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College of Hospitality, Retail and Sport Management

  • A city skyline with storm clouds above.

Tourism Area Response Network

The Tourism Area Response Network (TARN) is a co-management approach to fostering closer partnerships in tourism crisis management and communication. It is a specific set of linkages among a defined group of persons within the tourism industry who work closely together for the common goal of safeguarding tourists, providing accurate and timely information, and supporting a quick crisis recovery.

The Program

TARN Workshop brings together both the tourism industry’s private sector and public sector members. Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) representing the tourism sector are especially well suited to attend this workshop as well as organizations that host tourists.

The tourism-related products and services range includes restaurants, accommodations, attractions, transportation, etc. Participants in the one-day

TARN workshop will gain valuable knowledge and understanding to aid in the creation of a workable tourism crisis management plan that will ensure small businesses are ready for and thinking about evacuation routes, communication techniques, availability of technology to receive warnings, etc. 

The desired outcome of the TARN Workshop is to increase dialogue between public and private sectors to foster more robust democratic processes and develop responses.

  • A person with hands on top of a box at an evacuation center
  • A house in ruins after a natural disaster


  • Learn how your destination/organization can better prepare for crisis events that affect tourism and general economic well-being.
  • Enable your organization to respond to crises.
  • Become networked with a group of industry professionals to build cooperation, best practice sharing, and assistance in times of crisis.
  • Learn how your destination/organization can partner with other tourism organizations and non-tourism stakeholders from the public and private sectors to better respond in the event of a crisis.
  • Partner with other tourism businesses to address issues of financing, communication, and infrastructure needed in the time of a crisis.

Workshop Deliverables

SmartState Tourism continually monitors global crises that affect the tourism industry, while also monitoring and identifying best practices in crisis management and communication worldwide. These findings are integrated into the SmartState TCMP Workshops to provide relevant best practices that are specific to the tourism industry. Furthermore, we have partnerships with industry leaders and academics who are experts in tourism crisis management. Thus, we have relationships with practitioners and scholars across the globe who can share their experiences in planning for and managing past crises that have affected the tourism industry. SmartState Tourism offers both specialized regional and international workshops.

Two four-hour seminar classes:

  • Session 1: Crises in the tourism sector
  • Session 2: Crisis response in the tourism sector
  • Session 3: Partnerships in times of crisis
  • Session 4: Networking and building connections for crisis response

Materials to be Provided by SmartState:

  • PowerPoint presentations in English and Spanish
  • Pre-workshop reading materials in English
  • Workbook for completion (provided during the workshop)
  • Digital materials for three courses

We recommend the following materials are available to make the workshop successful:

  • Computer and projectors
  • Tables and chairs
  • A whiteboard
  • Five flip charts, markers, and paper
  • Wireless microphone
  • Video camera

Contact Us

Lori Pennington-Gray headshot

Lori Pennington-Gray, Ph.D.

Director and Endowed Chair
SmartState Tourism Center
College of Hospitality, Retail and Sport Management
University of South Carolina

Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.