Safety and security for Nevada’s visitors will be the focus of the newly launched Tourist Safety Institute at the UNLV Greenspun College of Urban Affairs.
Nevada Gov. Joe Lombardo signed Senate Bill 341 in June, appropriating $1 million in state funding over the next two years to support the institute. The institute was formally approved by the Nevada System of Higher Education Board of Regents on Sept. 8.
The UNLV Tourist Safety Institute will work with faculty across UNLV, and local, state, and federal authorities and community stakeholders to develop community resilience solutions and policies that enhance the safety and well-being of Nevada’s residents, tourists, and the tourism industry.
“Industries and university partnerships across the world have been instrumental in creating and executing some of the most innovative ideas and solutions related to economic development, workforce pipelines, and thriving communities. The UNLV Tourist Safety Institute is another example of creative partnerships between universities and their communities,” said Robert R. Ulmer, dean of the UNLV Greenspun College of Urban Affairs.
Interdisciplinary teams in the UNLV Greenspun College of Urban Affairs and throughout UNLV will collect, document, develop, and disseminate innovative techniques to plan for and implement safe, large-scale events.
“UNLV is intrinsically tied to the Entertainment Capital of the World, and the new Tourist Safety Institute will help our community, government, and resort industry partners better serve our region’s 40 million annual visitors,” said UNLV President Keith E. Whitfield. “We are grateful to Gov. Lombardo and the state legislature for their leadership in providing the grant funding that allows UNLV faculty experts the opportunity to apply their skills in research, policy, and programming to move our region forward.”
The institute will draw upon the Greenspun College of Urban Affairs’ research expertise in crime science, cybersecurity, trauma-informed care, crisis communication, policymaking, conflict resolution, and crowd management.
“Much like other states have established themselves as leaders of their respective industries in oil, technology, engineering, Nevada now has the opportunity - with this institute - to solidify itself as a thought leader in tourist safety and resilience,” Ulmer said. “The Institute’s research will advance Nevada’s mission to create tourist experiences that are safe, unique, immersive, and exciting.”
Research projects will be conducted in partnership with industry professionals to further foster organizational and community coordination to support secure and safe tourist locations. Priorities for the institute include disseminating data through webinars, podcasts, and conferences. Learn more on the Tourist Safety Institute website.
About the UNLV Greenspun College of Urban Affairs
The Greenspun College of Urban Affairs’ mission is to promote community solutions and resilience. Students in the college learn the knowledge and skills to make a positive impact in their communities. The college’s academic programs address community resiliency, mental health and social well-being, youth homelessness, crime and safety, storytelling, civic engagement, communication, collaboration, community engagement, leadership and public policy. The college’s cutting-edge curriculum, research programs, and private-public partnerships prepare students with workforce skills necessary to ensure they are successful and ready for an adaptable, resilient, and dynamic workforce.