Passion of the People – 1.6.6

The Storytelling Approach for Scientific Dissemination and Tourist Engagement

Storytelling refers to the art of narrating or relating events, experiences, or anecdotes in a way that captures an audience’s attention and imagination. It involves creating a series of events, characters, and circumstances that flow together in a logical, engaging manner to convey a message, express emotions, or simply entertain.

Storytelling has been used throughout human history as a means of preserving cultural traditions, transmitting values, and sharing experiences. The art of storytelling can be found in many forms, including oral traditions, literature, film, and theatre.

In science communication, storytelling is playing an increasingly important role because it makes it possible to present even complex content in a way that makes it accessible to a broad audience. Examples of this are science programmes on radio and television and contributions/posts on social media. In astronomy, this method is now used very often, because behind astronomy there is scientific content in physics that requires prior knowledge.

Meanwhile, storytelling also plays a significant role in tourism, as it helps to create an emotional connection between travellers and the destinations they visit. When a destination has a strong, compelling story, it can be more attractive and memorable to visitors, who are looking for unique and authentic experiences.

Storytelling in astrotourism can be used to:

  1. highlight the history and cultural heritage of a destination, giving visitors a deeper understanding of its past and the people who have lived there;
  2. create a sense of place by sharing local legends, myths, and traditions, which can help visitors feel more connected to their surroundings;
  3. showcase the natural beauty and scenic wonders of a destination, such as national parks, star parks, forests, and coastline, that can be a draw for outdoor enthusiasts;
  4. promote the local cuisine, arts, and crafts, which can be a major part of the travel experience for many visitors;
  5. share personal experiences and anecdotes from locals, tour guides, and other travellers, which can help to create a more immersive and memorable experience for visitors.

In short, storytelling can help to bring a destination to life, making it more appealing and memorable for tourists, and enhancing the overall quality of their travel experience.

In astrotourism, storytelling is a particularly good method of communication to get people excited about the stars. Stars are linked to numerous stories, myths and mysterious events. Good storytelling can be a competitive advantage when it comes to positive, authentic, and unique experiences.

Checking astrotourism destinations – Image by pivisoPixabay
The magic of storytelling – Image by YuriPixabay
Storytelling about the stars – Image by Syaibatul HamdiPixabay

Further resources

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Ancient astronomy and modern technology combine to tell stories of the night sky – ABC Australia

Astro-Tourism, Feeling the Universe – Go Wild

How to tell a science story ‘Talking Science’ Course #5 – Greg Foot

Storytelling turistico con Beppe Convertini: come raccontare il territorio – Igor Viitale

Storytelling per il turismo: sapersi raccontare – Francesca Casali

Online Resources

Destination Storytelling 2020: A Guide to Telling Great Stories

Storytelling for Mythmaking in Tourist Destinations – Licia Calvi, Moniek Hover

Storytelling in Sustainable Tourism Management: Challenges and Opportunities for Slovenia – Romana Korez-Vide

How to Grow Your Tour Company with Storytelling – Theresa Rappensperger

Storytelling about places: Tourism marketing in the digital age – Bassano, Barile, Piciocchi, Spohrer, Iandolo, Fisk


Storytelling turistico: come raccontare una destinazione – mediaticacomunicazioni


Further Readings

Lo Storytelling della memoria tra patrimonio e turismo nell’epoca della cultura convergente – Giulia Crippa

Digital storytelling nel marketing culturale e turistico – Elisa Bonacini

Teaching Materials

How to tell great stories on tour? Story telling advice for guides! – Guest Focus / Be a Better Guide

How to make your tours more interactive? Be a Better Guide insights – Tour Guide Training – Guest Focus / Be a Better Guide

Telling New Stories in Tourism – JCU: James Cook University, Australia

Masterclass: Creativity and storytelling – Web Summit

Storytelling for scientists – a masterclass in why and how to make science relatable – 3M UK & Ireland

Destination Storytelling to Effectively Promote Local Stories and Engaging Travel Experiences – TrainingAid

Storytelling alla scuola primaria – Missione insegnante

Digital Storytelling alla scuola primaria – Claudia Benazzi, Centro Psicologia Associazione Centro Psicologia e Counseling

Lo storytelling – Maestra Lidia

For Kids

Storytelling digitale alla Scuola dell’Infanzia – Introduzione – Veronica Baffi