New Insights Collective series to examine dynamics impacting resort communities |

New Insights Collective series to examine dynamics impacting resort communities

Staff reports

The Aspen Times, in collaboration with the nonprofit Insights Collective, is introducing in the coming weeks a series looking at the dynamic forces at play disrupting resort communities now and for the foreseeable future.

The nine-part series will address the impact of those forces on mountain tourism-based economies and related considerations, including public-sector policy, private-sector operations, and the full- and part-time residents and consumers who drive the local economic engine.

Scheduled to launch Jan. 27 in print and online, the series is being researched and written by members of the Insights Collective, a think tank of destination travel veterans. Their mission is to provide strategic thought, planning and guidance toward bettering destination travel economies focused on resort towns, said Collective founder Ralf Garrison.

The Collective uses data analysis, think tank decision-making, and scenario planning to 1) gather such facts and evidence as is available, 2) aggregate emerging best practices from others, and 3) provide insights and food for thought to resort-community leadership and inform the constituents who they represent.

“This series, our third since the pandemic began, is being launched at the onset of the third year of this global pandemic, amid the ongoing consequences of viral mutations, new record cases, and hospitalizations. The focus is on both the continuing and emerging reality of disruptors to short and long-term stability and sustainability in mountain destinations,” Collective president Tom Foley said. “Further complicating this understanding are the broader economic and social forces that are driving record visitation and immigration at a time when resort capacities, staffing and housing are both under pressure.”

Insights Collective’s objective is to provide a fact-based, apolitical perspective and share insights and case studies from others, Garrison said. The series aims to help make sense of the situation and offer a credible voice to residents and private-public sector representatives as they plan and navigate their way through a third year of unprecedented disruption, and to cope with the political and social ramifications upon which the future is dependent, he said.

For more information on the not-for-profit group, go to or email them at