S+T+ARTS Regional Centers | Repairing the Present

SustainingScapes | Challenge nº18

How might we develop innovative approaches and solutions for dealing with the tourism industry’s footprint while promoting sustainable tourism practices?

Consortium Partner: CYENS

The New European Bauhaus: BH2 Sustainable living in Europe & beyond

Problem Statement

Cyprus’ prevalent tourism model relies heavily on the year-round “sun and sea” narrative, overshadowing the true local human and natural assets of the country, while gradually transforming pristine habitats into artificial all-inclusive experiences. This project aspires to propose novel approaches – a concept, an experiment or a prototype – that will contribute towards sustainable shifts in the sector of tourism. 


Sustainable Tourism / Environmental Sustainability, Digital Technologies and Fabrication, Local materials and/or resource, Accessibility, Community Engagement

Challenge Context

Each year, approximately 3,5 million tourists visit Cyprus, equal to 4 times the country’s population, making the tourism sector one of the main pillars of the Cypriot economy. This momentous influx of tourists also brings some negative impacts: disproportionate demands for water and energy, in a place of increased droughts and insufficient natural resources; superfluous development of built environment and infrastructures with a heavy toll on urban, rural and wildlife ecosystems; heavy carbon footprint due to air/sea transport needs. While counteracting all the negative effects of tourism in Cyprus – and in fact, other Mediterranean locales – is utopian, novel tourism practises should foster societal, economic, environmental and cultural changes towards long-term sustainability.

Building upon the fundamental principles of the New Bauhaus vision, this residency encourages synergies between art & technology to envision a socially inclusive, environmentally ethical and digitally-enabled tourism sector. We are looking for a mission-driven collaborative project that taps into, and critically examines the local human and natural assets (narratives/data/materials) to finally propose shifted tourism practices respecting the eco-semiotics of environmentally sensitive tourism-dependent communities. While terroir and context are set specifically for Cyprus, this project can act as a paradigm for other areas of the Mediterranean that share a similar profile. The artist is expected to explore and employ methodologies from the various fields of the local expertise made available, such as interactive media, emerging technologies, machine learning, and/or an array of digital fabrication & prototyping tools.

Fellowship Characteristics: network, opportunities, and expectations

This project will be enabled by the collaborative innovation spaces of the local regional centre (CYENS) and its industry partner (PwC Cyprus). CYENS and PwC Cyprus will provide access to ICT/emerging technologies labs and expert consultation. PwC Cyprus will make available its Experience Centre and provide any other relevant input possible. CYENS will offer the research and technological expertise of the ITICA and Museum Lab MRG teams, while it will also make available the digital fabrication & prototyping tools from the Thinker Makerspace

The LEG network includes industry professionals that focus on sustainable development, cultural and artistic activities, eco-tourism and emerging technologies, academics from universities and cultural organizations that focus on contemporary art, media art, museology, emerging technologies and ICT, as well as representatives from municipality authorities and public organisations with a focus on tourism, sustainability strategic planning and development.

The artist is expected to produce a concept, an experiment or a prototype that will address the subject of developing sustainability sensitive practices in the context of Tourism. We will favour self-driven, research-based, critical artists who will demonstrate a working knowledge for the implementation of their proposal. 

The artist will be expected to present their project in the relevant S+T+ARTS Prototyping Park 5-day showcase event and create an interactive presentation of his work process during the Digital Immersion MakersLab Workshop. Both events are to be held between May-October 2022. 

Jury Day(s)

Jury Day will be: digital
Jury day will be held between 17- 19 January 2022 (TBC)

Useful links

Local Expert Group

Challenge Videos