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Published on : Tuesday, November 26, 2013
The new joint program includes networking opportunities through the GSTC’s Destination Membership, and Sustainable Travel International’s Sustainable Destination Leadership Network (SDLN). These programs, which are now available at a combined price, provide destinations with an unparalleled opportunity for learning, idea sharing, advocacy, and collaboration on a global scale.
“Collaboration is the essence of sustainable tourism” stressed Mauro Marrocu, CEO of GSTC. “Partnering in areas of common interest and responsibility will increase each organization’s ability to achieve its mission, and will increase the positive impact of our joint efforts. It will also enable us to take the new GSTC Destination Criteria to the next level, and secure increased adoption of the criteria around the world.”
The GSTC has also launched a new Destination Partner Program, following the completion of a two-year Early Adopter pilot implemented in more than 10 destinations worldwide. This pilot resulted in the release of the Global Sustainable Tourism Criteria for Destinations on 1st November.
The criteria provide, for the first time, a universal set of guidelines for managing destination sustainability.
GSTC Destination Partners will be able to request an on-site evaluation, as well as training on alignment with the GSTC Destination Criteria. Destinations will also continue to provide feedback for ongoing improvements to the program. Sustainable Travel International will be one of the GSTC’s approved technical implementers of these offerings, enabling GSTC to deliver consistent and high quality sustainable tourism solutions in destinations worldwide.
“Destinations play a critical role in the long-term viability of the travel industry and sustainable tourism has the power to drive significant economic growth in communities,” said Brian Mullis, CEO of Sustainable Travel International. “We are delighted to strengthen our partnership with the GSTC while playing an active role in these global initiatives, which are designed to make sustainable destination management a reality.”
The new agreement between the two organizations is non-exclusive, and non-competitive with Certification Bodies, which will be eligible for Recognition, Approval and Accreditation utilizing the new Criteria for Destinations.