PhD defence D. (Débora) Ribeiro Póvoa

Film Tourism in Brazil
Prof.dr. S.L. Reijnders
Dr. E.S. Martens
Thursday 23 Mar 2023, 15:30 - 17:00
PhD defence
Senate Hall
Erasmus Building
Campus Woudestein
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D. Ribeiro Póvoa will defend her PhD dissertation on Thursday 23 March 2023, entitled: ’Film Tourism in Brazil‘.


Film tourism, i.e., the act of travelling to places associated with audiovisual media, has become a prominent tourism niche worldwide, believed to bring important economic contributions to locations. However, research has shown that this phenomenon might also have detrimental effects on places and communities, such as overcrowding and cultural commodification. This dissertation addresses these issues by analyzing the case of Brazil, where film tourism occurs in a spontaneous and unplanned manner, and often in locations that experience different political, economic, social and environmental vulnerabilities. In particular, this study investigates how film tourism initiatives develop over time in vulnerable locations in Brazil, and how members of the involved communities perceive, experience and evaluate these initiatives. Through participant observation and interviews with local stakeholders involved in three film tourism ecologies in the country, I demonstrate how film tourism benefits are often only temporary – a phenomenon I propose to call the "telenovela effect" – and how the success and sustainability of film tourism projects depend on a series of contextual circumstances of places and power dynamics between people. This research identifies five of such circumstances: (1) the production logic and goals of the project, (2) the infrastructural, geographical and socioeconomic characteristics of the location, (3) the political configurations in place to support (or not) the project, (4) the state of the audiovisual industry at country level, and (5) the project’s internal organization, especially regarding tensions and power dynamics between involved stakeholders.

More information

The public defence will begin exactly at 15.30 hrs. The doors will be closed once the public defence starts, latecomers may be able to watch on the screen outside. There is no possibility of entrance during the first part of the ceremony. Due to the solemn nature of the ceremony, we recommend that you do not take children under the age of 6 to the first part of the ceremony.

A live stream link has been provided to the candidate.

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