• Contact Info

Ooi, Natalie

Senior Instructor


Research Areas research areas


research overview

  • Natalie‚Äôs research interests include the sustainability and resilience of tourism destinations, with particular interest in the complexities of tourism-community and other stakeholder relationships within mountain resort communities. Natalie has also worked on research projects that examine key management challenges within public spaces utilized for recreation, barriers to access and use of open space by diverse communities, the sustainability of backpacker tourism and volunteer tourism, and the use of climate change and drought data within the ski industry and how it can help improve business decision-making into the future.


  • Outdoor Recreation Economy, Sustainable Tourism Destination Management, Community Economic Development, Mountain Resort Communities


courses taught

  • ENVM 5065 - Community Economic Development and the ORE
    Primary Instructor - Fall 2023
    Introduces community economic development theories, frameworks, and processes, as relevant to the ORE. Best practices for building the ORE within all types of communities are discussed, highlighting the importance of equitable, community-focused, integrated, and sustainable destination development practices. Tying this all together is the importance of community economic development in building community capacity for the future.
  • ENVM 5067 - Building Community Capacity
    Primary Instructor - Spring 2023 / Spring 2024
    Assist partner communities who are looking to build community capacity through outdoor recreation. Students learn and apply best practices related to building community capital and trust, assessing community strengths, providing strategic planning and guidance, engaging diverse community stakeholders, developing successful partnerships and identifying relevant programs, partners and funding sources to assist with community economic development.
  • ENVM 6100 - Special Topics for Master of the Environment Program
    Primary Instructor - Fall 2021 / Fall 2022
    A variety of topics not currently offered in curriculum; offered depending on instructor availability and student demand.
  • OREC 5001 - Sustainability Practices within the Outdoor Recreation Economy
    Primary Instructor - Spring 2022 / Spring 2023 / Spring 2024
    Explore sustainability practices that create a diverse, resilient, equitable, and just outdoor recreation industry. Focus on sustainability practices for outdoor products and businesses, as well as communities and destinations. Various environmental management systems, certification programs, and processes are viewed within an Outdoor Recreation Economy context, alongside broader social, environmental, and economic movements and factors influencing the future trajectory of the Outdoor Recreation Economy. Examine best practices surrounding the implementation and communication of sustainability efforts.
  • OREC 5008 - Community Economic Development Strategies for the Outdoor Recreation Economy
    Primary Instructor - Spring 2022 / Fall 2022 / Fall 2023
    Focus on the various community economic development strategies that can be adopted to develop and grow the Outdoor Recreation Economy within a given place. Recognition is given to the many and varied economic, socio-cultural, and environmental benefits the Outdoor Recreation Economy can provide. Consideration is also given to the importance of integrated community development and planning.
  • OREC 5009 - Resilient Communities and Business Development
    Primary Instructor - Fall 2021
    Communities and businesses are often on the front lines when it comes to climate change impacts and natural disasters. Resilient systems can enhance communities and ultimately lower costs for businesses. This course addresses public and private sector actions that can be taken to enhance resiliency for communities and businesses. Recommended prerequisite: Cert 3/ Course I (Sustainable Land Use and Development).
  • OREC 5018 - Community and Place Matters
    Primary Instructor - Fall 2022 / Fall 2023
    Explore the towns and communities that nurture and develop outdoor recreation businesses and amenities. Compare how communities provide a place for people to live, as well as the necessary infrastructure, resources and supporting facilities and services that make communities great places to live, work, visit and recreate. Examine the structure and organization of communities and the role of government and governance. Learn how the engagement and participation of community members in decision-making through democratic processes can influence the development of the outdoor recreation economy and community economic development outcomes.
  • OREC 5019 - Building Community Capacity and Readiness for the Outdoor Recreation Economy
    Primary Instructor - Summer 2022 / Spring 2023 / Spring 2024
    Focus on how to build community capacity and readiness for the successful development of the Outdoor Recreation Economy. Emphasis is given to the different methods of building community capacity to ensure communities are in the best position to address challenges. Although every community is unique and the process of community economic development through the Outdoor Recreation Economy will look different from place to place, commonly identified best practices and case studies demonstrate how the Outdoor Recreation Economy can be developed to bring about significant economic, socio-cultural, and environmental benefits to communities across the world.


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