Sustainable Tourism: Training for Tomorrow >> EUROPARC joins new ERASMUS+ project

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Building up curricula that address the particular needs of Protected Area professionals and delivering them through new, innovative and digital tools is a  strong commitment of the EUROPARC Federation. Earlier this year, EUROPARC kick-started (as a leader), the project LIFE Supporting e-learning and capacity building for Natura 2000 Managers, and last week joined an ERASMUS+ project to build the capacity of professionals in the field of sustainable tourism. 

Sustainable Tourism: Training for Tomorrow

Project partners planning the outcomes and timing of the project, at kick-off meeting of the ERASMUS+ Project “Sustainable Tourism: Training for Tomorrow”, Italy, 2018

Last week, EUROPARC joined the kick-off meeting of the project “Sustainable Tourism: Training for Tomorrow”. The project runs for a period of 30 months and will be finished in Feb 2021. Funded through the ERASMUS+ Key Action 2 (Cooperation for innovation and the exchange of good practices and Strategic partnerships in the field of education and training), the project brought together partners working on different fields in the sustainable tourism sector:

  • 2 universities: The Hasselt University (BE), who is also the project leader, and the University of Hull (UK)
  • The network of European Protected Areas: EUROPARC Federation (DE)
  • The network of ecotourism professionals in Spain: Asociacion de Ecoturismo en Espana (ES)
  • 2 park authorities: Ente Parchi Emilia Occidentale (IT) and Montagne de Reims Nature Regional Park (FR)

Federparchi – EUROPARC Italy and the French Federation of Regional Nature Parks are also engaged in the project as associated project partners.

training for tomorrow, erasmus project, sustainable tourism

Collaborative work at the kick-off meeting of the ERASMUS+ Project “Sustainable Tourism: Training for Tomorrow”, Italy, 2018

Building the capacity of sustainable tourism professionals

Aiming at jointly develop a European standard for Sustainable Tourism Training for protected areas (Pas), drawing from the experiences of the EUROPARC Charter for Sustainable Tourism (itself a European tool), the partnership has the following objectives:

  • to significantly increase the quality, supply and accessibility of training in sustainable tourism for PA stakeholders across Europe;
  • to develop an innovative, open access, online training platform which will enable access to sustainable tourism training for PA staff, businesses, local/regional authorities, and others;
  • to provide high-quality e-learning and ‘blended learning’ opportunities, through the creation of a new, up-to-date curriculum, and supported by a training toolkit, based on end users’ needs;
  • to disseminate the training curriculum across European and national networks through a comprehensive programme of multiplier events and dissemination initiatives.

The project is designed to engage and deliver outcomes to:

  • Staff of Protected Area authorities across Europe
  • Local businesses operating in and around protected areas (e.g. hotels, restaurants, tour operators) who are collaborating with Protected Areas (or aim to) in driving sustainable tourism
  • Staff of local authorities, development groups, business associations, conservation groups etc. who aim to partner with Protected Areas in the development of sustainable destinations
  • Trainers involved in supporting PAs and their partners in driving sustainable tourism at business and Protected Areas destination level

Project outputs: a digital curriculum for Sustainable Tourism professionals

The first output of the project will be a ‘Sustainable Tourism Skills Report (based on a TNA – training needs analysis), which will be developed by the EUROPARC Federation with the support of all partners. The Hasselt University will then oversee the definition of a Sustainable tourism curriculum, which will be delivered as a training toolkit and be accessible in an online training platform. By the end of the project,  partners will deliver a report with recommendations for policy and practice.

Throughout the project, there will be several opportunities for the EUROPARC network to participate.

Training workshops for Protected Areas staff, businesses and public partners will take place in Spain, France and Italy, as well as a transnational “train-the-trainer” workshop and a final international event for policymakers to disseminate the outcomes of te project.

The Project “Sustainable Tourism: Training for Tomorrow”  (STTfT) is funded through the ERASMUS+ Key Action 2-Cooperation for innovation and the exchange of good practices-Strategic partnerships in the field of education and training-Strategic Partnership supporting innovation.