Our Strategic Approach

Policy & Advocacy

Our Policy & Advocacy pillar generates thought leadership and research to guide strategies for the Visitor Economy, resilience, and economic development. This unit collects data to measure and track impact, while collaborating with global partners to publicize the findings and recommendations that will transform Puerto Rico. By identifying critical challenges and opportunities affecting the development and management of the destination, the team also provides recommendations for improving the resilience of communities.

CTA: Explore our latest Policy Brief here.

Visitor Economy

Our Visitor Economy pillar seeks to grow this economic model in the rural communities of Puerto Rico by developing destination plans alongside communities. Through this pillar, we are cultivating the natural, cultural, and human capital assets in each destination, to create an explosion of sustainable and authentic experiences for visitors from around the world.

CTA: Learn more about the Visitor Economy here.

Resilience

Our Resilience pillar seeks to mentor, prepare, and fund existing and emerging new businesses in order to inspire a new generation of resilient entrepreneurs, prepared to survive and thrive under unforeseen circumstances. We also work with local NGOs, governments, businesses, and stakeholders across all communities to facilitate comprehensive planning that will lead to sustainable and measurable improvements in community resilience across the island.

CTA: Check out our Social Capital Mapping Tool that will support community resilience planning across the key areas of health, education, security, at-risk communities, and community services.

Expanded links/text: 

P&A:

Links: https://www.foundationforpuertorico.org/blog/2019/11/21/fpr-launches-second-quarterly-visitor-economy-policy-briefing

In this issue, we start by covering the economic impact of poor maritime access in Culebra and Vieques and discuss new legislation to regulate businesses in the sharing economy space. We also examine a recent report that estimates the economic impact of visitor spending on the Island after hurricane María. And finally, we offer 8 digital strategies businesses can use to stay up to date in the latest consumer trends.

(Tags: #localempowerement #enterpreneursandsmallbusiness #resilience)

https://www.foundationforpuertorico.org/blog/fprs-research-and-analytics-program-policy-briefings

In this publication, the unit analyzes several issues such as the regulatory framework of the collaborative economy in Puerto Rico, focused on short-term lodging; the prevailing data access gap on the visitor economy and the traveler’s survey published by the Puerto Rico Planning Board; the FPR’s new tool on tourism data in Puerto Rico; a recap of the “Industry Update” event held by Discover Puerto Rico; and the announcement of the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) on its Global Summit event to be held in April 2020, in San Juan.

(Tags #localempowerement)

Resilience:

SOCIAL CAPITAL MAPPING TOOL (sub-page or expanded text)

This first phase of the project includes multiple interactive maps with information on existing social assets in and around our communities across the 78 municipalities. Each map promotes awareness among residents and visitors about local places and initiatives in their surroundings. The fundamental purpose of this tool is to make this information even more accessible to our citizens and visitors, thus promoting among them the potential to identify the availability of resources at the local level allowing effective, agile and participatory community planning. The maps have been classified into the following focus areas:

  • Health
  • Education
  • Security
  • Communities
  • Community services

We hope this tool will be of great use to everyone. We will continue making improvements and updates to this tool to ensure each user has the most optimal experience possible in their navigation and use. Please note, this is a pilot version and currently shows progress on the collection and analysis of data relevant to Puerto Rico. Based on this effort, Foundation for Puerto Rico (FPR) will develop a tool with a higher level of analysis possibilities for users. Stay tuned here and on our social channels for more updates.

https://wcrp.maps.arcgis.com

MORE ON VISITOR ECONOMY (blog post and/or expanded text)

Puerto Rico is going through more than a decade-long economic recession. After the tax policy that was placed to encourage U.S. corporations to invest in Puerto Rico was repealed in 1996, many manufacturing companies that operated in the island moved elsewhere and there was no economic strategy left in place to replace it. The economic effect has been negative, and the island has lost more than 180,0001 non-farm jobs and more than 600,0002 residents since 2005. Meanwhile the government has relied on debt to cover the tax base and income reduction.

While there are several viable options for driving meaningful and sustainable economic growth, few currently have the potential to make the immediate significant impact Puerto Rico needs. After a thorough analysis, FPR determined the Visitor Economy should be a spearhead for Puerto Rico’s economic development as we have the physical and cultural assets in place to not only have an immediate and significant impact, but one that is also accessible and inclusive of the majority of its people. It also has a critical indirect benefit, which is that it helps maintain and strengthen infrastructure like highway networks, utilities, communication networks and essential services – which are also used by residents. This brings an additional dimension of improvement of the quality of life for all on the island, helping minimize the loss of human capital due to emigration and improving the economic resilience of our communities. The definition of the Visitor Economy is not constrained by travel and tourism, it encompasses a bigger concept within the economy.

The Opportunity

The World Travel and Tourism Commission (WTTC) calculated that in 2018 the Visitor Economy represents 9.9%3 of Puerto Rico’s gross national product and was responsible for ~57,0004 jobs. Globally, tourism has experienced steady growth almost every year. International tourist arrivals increased from 528 million in 2005 to 1.19 billion in 2015. Figures were forecasted to exceed 1.8 billion by 2030. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, Puerto Rico received 4.3MM visitors who stayed for an average length of 4.1 days. Given that data, if Puerto Rico increases the number of visitors by two million and prolongs the length of their visits by 2 days for a period of five years; that would signify an additional $7 billion dollars to Puerto Rico’s economy. The upside can therefore be tremendous. 

Puerto Rico is rich in assets that are conducive to the Visitor Economy, from the more traditional physical attractions such as stunning beaches, mountains and caves, to more intangible assets revolving around its people, traditions and culture. The combination creates a diverse offer for a wide range of tourists, with the potential to grow in attainable, high-growth, experience-focused segments like ecotourism & cultural tourism.

About People

We take knowledge to action to achieve resilience, economic growth, and policies that scale up social and economic impact.

We take knowledge to action to achieve resilience, economic growth, and policies that scale up social and economic impact.

About People

Policy & Advocacy

Our Policy & Advocacy pillar generates thought leadership and research to guide strategies for the Visitor Economy, resilience, and economic development. This unit collects data to measure and track impact, while collaborating with global partners to publicize the findings and recommendations that will transform Puerto Rico. By identifying critical challenges and opportunities affecting the development and management of the destination, the team also provides recommendations for improving the resilience of communities.

CTA: Explore our latest Policy Brief here.

Visitor Economy

Our Visitor Economy pillar seeks to grow this economic model in the rural communities of Puerto Rico by developing destination plans alongside communities. Through this pillar, we are cultivating the natural, cultural, and human capital assets in each destination, to create an explosion of sustainable and authentic experiences for visitors from around the world.

CTA: Learn more about the Visitor Economy here.

Resilience

Our Resilience pillar seeks to mentor, prepare, and fund existing and emerging new businesses in order to inspire a new generation of resilient entrepreneurs, prepared to survive and thrive under unforeseen circumstances. We also work with local NGOs, governments, businesses, and stakeholders across all communities to facilitate comprehensive planning that will lead to sustainable and measurable improvements in community resilience across the island.

CTA: Check out our Social Capital Mapping Tool that will support community resilience planning across the key areas of health, education, security, at-risk communities, and community services.

Expanded links/text: 

P&A:

Links: https://www.foundationforpuertorico.org/blog/2019/11/21/fpr-launches-second-quarterly-visitor-economy-policy-briefing

In this issue, we start by covering the economic impact of poor maritime access in Culebra and Vieques and discuss new legislation to regulate businesses in the sharing economy space. We also examine a recent report that estimates the economic impact of visitor spending on the Island after hurricane María. And finally, we offer 8 digital strategies businesses can use to stay up to date in the latest consumer trends.

(Tags: #localempowerement #enterpreneursandsmallbusiness #resilience)

https://www.foundationforpuertorico.org/blog/fprs-research-and-analytics-program-policy-briefings

In this publication, the unit analyzes several issues such as the regulatory framework of the collaborative economy in Puerto Rico, focused on short-term lodging; the prevailing data access gap on the visitor economy and the traveler’s survey published by the Puerto Rico Planning Board; the FPR’s new tool on tourism data in Puerto Rico; a recap of the “Industry Update” event held by Discover Puerto Rico; and the announcement of the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) on its Global Summit event to be held in April 2020, in San Juan.

(Tags #localempowerement)

Resilience:

SOCIAL CAPITAL MAPPING TOOL (sub-page or expanded text)

This first phase of the project includes multiple interactive maps with information on existing social assets in and around our communities across the 78 municipalities. Each map promotes awareness among residents and visitors about local places and initiatives in their surroundings. The fundamental purpose of this tool is to make this information even more accessible to our citizens and visitors, thus promoting among them the potential to identify the availability of resources at the local level allowing effective, agile and participatory community planning. The maps have been classified into the following focus areas:

Health
Education
Security
Communities
Community services
We hope this tool will be of great use to everyone. We will continue making improvements and updates to this tool to ensure each user has the most optimal experience possible in their navigation and use. Please note, this is a pilot version and currently shows progress on the collection and analysis of data relevant to Puerto Rico. Based on this effort, Foundation for Puerto Rico (FPR) will develop a tool with a higher level of analysis possibilities for users. Stay tuned here and on our social channels for more updates.

https://wcrp.maps.arcgis.com/apps/MapSeries/index.html?appid=2157824176df402ea58c57083c4207ce

MORE ON VISITOR ECONOMY (blog post and/or expanded text)
Puerto Rico is going through more than a decade-long economic recession. After the tax policy that was placed to encourage U.S. corporations to invest in Puerto Rico was repealed in 1996, many manufacturing companies that operated in the island moved elsewhere and there was no economic strategy left in place to replace it. The economic effect has been negative, and the island has lost more than 180,0001 non-farm jobs and more than 600,0002 residents since 2005. Meanwhile the government has relied on debt to cover the tax base and income reduction.

While there are several viable options for driving meaningful and sustainable economic growth, few currently have the potential to make the immediate significant impact Puerto Rico needs. After a thorough analysis, FPR determined the Visitor Economy should be a spearhead for Puerto Rico’s economic development as we have the physical and cultural assets in place to not only have an immediate and significant impact, but one that is also accessible and inclusive of the majority of its people. It also has a critical indirect benefit, which is that it helps maintain and strengthen infrastructure like highway networks, utilities, communication networks and essential services – which are also used by residents. This brings an additional dimension of improvement of the quality of life for all on the island, helping minimize the loss of human capital due to emigration and improving the economic resilience of our communities. The definition of the Visitor Economy is not constrained by travel and tourism, it encompasses a bigger concept within the economy.

The Opportunity
The World Travel and Tourism Commission (WTTC) calculated that in 2018 the Visitor Economy represents 9.9%3 of Puerto Rico’s gross national product and was responsible for ~57,0004 jobs. Globally, tourism has experienced steady growth almost every year. International tourist arrivals increased from 528 million in 2005 to 1.19 billion in 2015. Figures were forecasted to exceed 1.8 billion by 2030. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, Puerto Rico received 4.3MM visitors who stayed for an average length of 4.1 days. Given that data, if Puerto Rico increases the number of visitors by two million and prolongs the length of their visits by 2 days for a period of five years; that would signify an additional $7 billion dollars to Puerto Rico’s economy. The upside can therefore be tremendous. 

Puerto Rico is rich in assets that are conducive to the Visitor Economy, from the more traditional physical attractions such as stunning beaches, mountains and caves, to more intangible assets revolving around its people, traditions and culture. The combination creates a diverse offer for a wide range of tourists, with the potential to grow in attainable, high-growth, experience-focused segments like ecotourism & cultural tourism.

$504K

disbursed in cash grants

+200 small businesses

supported across 11 municipalities

+800 hours

of mentorship and technical assistance

As of 2019, an 89% of the businesses we assisted were still open. This compared to the Federal Emergency Management Agency estimates, which says that 40 - 60% of businesses close after a natural disaster.