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Geo-knowledge Management and Geoconservation via Geoparks and Geotourism

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A geopark as a new tourism destination contains a number of geological heritage sites. Geoparks as an innovation for the protection of natural and geological heritage are a network of sites for the transfer of Earth knowledge and the popularisation of geosciences. Moreover, geoparks play an important role in rural development through local involvement in geopark and geotourism activities. This paper discusses the role played by geoparks in the conservation and geo-knowledge management. To this end, 25 geopark strategies were analysed (20 in Europe and three in Asia: Malaysia, Japan and Iran; one in Australia and one in South America: Brazil). The results indicate that finding, introducing and establishing geosites are the first steps for geopark creation. Furthermore, involving local communities in the conservation of geoparks and providing educational projects are key factors in the knowledge management and preservation of geoparks as new tourist attractions.

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Firstly, our appreciation goes to FCT (Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia) for supporting this paper which is a part of PhD thesis of the first author. In addition, the authors wish to thank Margarete Patzak—the director of the Division of earth sciences in UNESCO—for her contribution in collecting questionnaires, and they also appreciate the help of managers and officials for providing the requested information.

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Correspondence to Neda T. Farsani.

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Farsani, N.T., Coelho, C.O.A., Costa, C.M.M. et al. Geo-knowledge Management and Geoconservation via Geoparks and Geotourism. Geoheritage 6, 185–192 (2014).

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