Proactive Research for Effective Destination Management
By Lauren Schlau and Carl Ribaudo
John Lambeth, President of Civitas, a company that helps establish and protect business and tourism
improvement districts, recently sent an article asserting the following: “DMO leaders state that they
must work harder to defend their budgets. The threat and response assume a pattern. A new grab on
tourism dollars is met with a new call to rally supporters and to prepare yet another study…what if we
start to play offense?”
He continues with, “Elected officials should base tourism funding on benefits to the citizenry. How
many jobs does this investment create? How much revenue does it generate for public coffers?
John asks, “What do we do to change things?” He proposes continually promoting the positive impacts
travel and tourism, as well as creating “industry based” not discretionary funding mechanisms in order
to protect critical tourism promotion efforts.

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