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NTG Webinar: ‘New Skills Requirements for Tourism in a Post-Covid World’

9 December 2021 @ 5:00 PM - 6:00 PM

NTG Webinar: ‘New Skills Requirements for Tourism in a Post-Covid World’

17.00 – 18.00 CET (16.00 – 17.00 GMT)


Join the livestream: NTG Webinar Series – New Skills Requirements for Tourism in a Post-Covid World – YouTube



This webinar, organized and chaired by key NTG partner, TU Dublin, School of Hospitality Management and Tourism, will discuss and address post-covid skills requirements for tourism. The webinar will focus on perspectives from industry and examples will be presented from a number of different tourism sub-sectors in Ireland including accommodation, food and beverage, travel and tour operators, and visitor attractions. Additionally, the webinar will provide an overview of the reopening and recovery of the tourism industry and post-covid skills requirements at the European and national levels. Speakers include Rob Rankin (member of the Recovery Oversight Group for Tourism and President of the Irish Tour Operators Association), Alan Smullen (Head of People, The Doyle Collection), and Roisin McKee. The webinar will be chaired and moderated by TU Dublin and will conclude with a Q&A discussion.


Program 17.00 – 18.00 CET (16.00 – 17.00 GMT)

  • Introduction
  • Rob Rankin (Recovery Oversight Group for Tourism and President of the Irish Tour Operators Association)
  • Alan Smullen (Head of People, The Doyle Collection)
  • Roisin McKee (Country Director People 1st International)
  • Q&A


Alan Smullen

Alan was General Manager at The Croke Park Hotel, a member of The Doyle Collection, for eleven years, and has recently been appointed Head of People for The Doyle Collection – a new role focused on the strategic implementation of their people strategy.  He joined the team at Croke Park working on the Front Desk in September 2005, shortly after the hotel opened.  After completing a B.Sc. Hospitality Management and M.Sc. Hospitality Management in TU Dublin (previously DIT Cathal Brugha St.), Alan continued his professional development in areas such as Strategic Management, Strategic Decision Making, and Leadership through Irish Hospitality Institute, Failte Ireland, Cornell University, and London School of Economics. During this time Alan was honored to receive the IHI Young Hospitality Manager of the Year Award in 2013 and was a finalist in the General Manager of the Year category in 2019. As an experienced business leader, Alan always remains focused on the continued development of those around him. He places a huge emphasis on the importance of people and creating a positive environment for them to grow and develop.  Some of his career highs to date include watching the progress that colleagues and ex-colleagues have made across the industry, moving into leadership positions. One of his favorite quotes gives an idea of his leadership style – “Leaders don’t create more followers; they create more Leaders”. During his time at Croke Park, Alan was been involved in numerous company-wide initiatives including the development and implementation of a new People Strategy, along with being a Trustee and Board Member of the Company’s Management Pension scheme.


Rob Rankin

Rob is the founder and owner Vagabond tours – Ireland’s leading small group tour operator and one of the most respected brands in Irish tourism. The company has achieved many firsts in Irish tourism, in terms of innovation, product development, and marketing. Vagabond has also won many awards and is the only Irish company to be chosen as one of National Geographic Traveller’s ‘50 Tours of a Lifetime’. Rob is also recognized as a practical and dedicated voice for sustainable tourism in Ireland, not only through the actions of Vagabond, but as the owner of Sustainable Travel Ireland (STI), which trains and certifies Irish tourism businesses according to their GSTC recognized criteria. Although he certainly wouldn’t claim to be an expert… Outside of his day jobs, Rob also wears a few other hats. He is currently President of the ITOA (Incoming Tour Operators Association), was the co-founder and founding chairman of the IAAT (Ireland’s Association of Adventure Tourism), and sits on many leading industry working groups and committees.


Roisin McKee

Roisin Mckee is Country Director at People 1st International. People 1st International (www.people1st.co.uk) is an industry-led skills expert. We support businesses in the UK and internationally to build, develop and retain skilled workforces. Roisin’s role involves working in partnership with the tourism industry, government, and TVET to shape a skills system driven by employer demand. Roisin has over 20 years’ hospitality and tourism experience gained in industry, TVET, and community sectors in Ireland, the UK, and internationally. She has significant experience in building effective industry-TVET partnerships and facilitating the delivery of a diverse range of skills solutions for the visitor economy sector to help tackle skills and recruitment needs. With a passion for nurturing talent, Roisin is a firm advocate for the impact that skills development can make on individuals, businesses, and the visitor economy sector.


Denise O’Leary – moderator

Denise O’Leary is Assistant Head of the School of Hospitality Management and Tourism in Technological University Dublin. She has extensive experience as a manager, lecturer, and researcher in third-level institutions and over 10 years of experience as a consultant in the private sector in Ireland and the United States. During that time, she has been involved in tourism development at a community level as well as in the development and delivery of tourism education. She has also successfully facilitated a broad variety of evaluation, strategic planning, and inter-organizational relationship development activities. Her current research focuses on tourism skills needs.


Join the livestream: NTG Webinar Series – New Skills Requirements for Tourism in a Post-Covid World – YouTube


9 December 2021
5:00 PM - 6:00 PM


TU Dublin