Summer 2020 - Inaugural Issue
July – September

Welcome to the Destination Stewardship Report. This quarterly e-newsletter is a collaboration between the Destination Stewardship Center and Global Sustainable Tourism Council, and in time maybe others. Our goal is to provide information and insights useful to anyone whose work or interests involve improving destination stewardship in a post-pandemic world. It’s an all-volunteer experiment, so its success will depend on your interest, feedback, and content contributions. Join us, and help each other.
—Jonathan Tourtellot, Editor

For more information and participation please feel free to contact us.

In Italy's Dolomites, a "Future Lab" Inspires DMO Innovation

In the last five years, Dolomiti Paganella DMO in the Trentino region in northern Italy has transitioned from a fairly disorganized structure with no community support into a well-managed, prosperous, and widely-supported destination management body focused on stakeholder cooperation and sustainability. Marta Mills explains how the DMO’s innovative Future Lab initiative is now helping shape a roadmap to post-Covid19 recovery in the first part of Europe hit by the coronavirus.
The region became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2009 because of its ‘intrinsic, exceptional natural beauty’. According to UNESCO, READ MORE
Engaging Gateway Communities for a U.S. National Park
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Improving relations between a national park and its gateway communities can be tricky, involving touchy issues such as invasive species, extractive industries, air pollution, visitation levels and economics, even dark skies. The collaborative approach employed for North Dakota’s Theodore Roosevelt National Park yielded actionable community ideas and opened lines of communication while still upholding park conservation goals. The technique? Accentuate the positive with the approach called Appreciative Inquiry. Kelly Bricker’s University of Utah team explains how it worked.  READ MORE
Crete Needs to Restore Its Gastronomic Heritage
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Culinary expert Nikki Rose says Crete has wandered far from its roots as the “Garden of Greece,” losing traditional farms, villages, and cuisine in the process. Mass tourism has been partly responsible, and sustainable tourism could help reverse the trend, restoring Crete’s traditional, organic, more ecologically suitable agricultural methods. Consumer demand for health and gastronomy is on the rise. Catering to it could help Crete restore its 4,000-year-old agricultural heritage and once-robust ecosystem. The approach called “agro-ecology” shows the way.
GSTC's Crucial Criterion A1: Destination Management
Its Importance by Randy Durband, CEO, GSTC
The Context by Jonathan Tourtellot, CEO, DSC

Its Importance – The GSTC Destination Criteria have well proven their value as guides to good destination stewardship. GSTC has chosen not to provide weighting to specific criteria, preferring to present a holistic system. Yet, it is natural to call out key elements. For example, . . . READ MORE
Anna Maria Island Offers a Model for Sustainable Stewardship
This historic holiday island on Florida’s Gulf Coast was succumbing to bland residential development with little regard for sustainability. As Anna Maria became increasingly popular with tourists, retirees, and second homes, the town was in danger of losing its past charm, historic character, and its limited commercial district on Pine Avenue. In this case, it took a visionary leader from the private sector to turn things around. David Randle sums up six lessons from Anna Maria Island.
Pine Avenue’s history reaches back more than a century. In 1911 a steamer would bring tourists from . . .
The Elaborate Process of Revising GSTC’s Destination Criteria
The GSTC Destination Criteria (GSTC-D) were first developed through a stakeholder consultation process leading to their initial publication (Version 1.0) on 1st November 2013. In 2018 the first revision of the GSTC-D began. The process has taken over a year to complete, including two rounds of global public comment, with final approval reached in December 2019. GSTC’s International Standards team explains what the criteria are, what they are for, how the revision process worked, and the main changes that have resulted. READ MORE
“Future of Tourism Coalition” Takes Shape

As destinations look forward to recovering from COVID-19, six nongovernmental organizations, advised by Global Sustainable Tourism Council, have united for the first time in a call for the world to reconsider how tourism works. Coalition members include: Destination Stewardship Center, the Center for Responsible Travel (CREST), Green Destinations, Sustainable Travel International, Tourism Cares, and the Travel Foundation. As neutral custodian of the Destination Criteria, GSTC serves in an advisory role only.
    The Future of Tourism Coalition urges endorsement of 13 Guiding Principles. Using the GSTC Criteria as a minimum starting point, the Guiding Principles are intended to help destinations sidestep the excesses of the past and put tourism on a renewal course for a more rewarding, more sustainable future.
   As of 22 June 2020, more than 150 companies, agencies, and organizations have endorsed the Principles. A few have raised suggestions and modifications. Coalition leaders have agreed to be “in listening mode” for a reasonable period while more reaction and ideas come in. You can contact the Coalition
here, and read more on the DSC blog page.

Destination Monitor
Notable news on stewardship developments around the world.
• Mexico: Battle Rages Over Maya Tourist Train | WSJ
Experts Opine on the Future of Travel | NY Times
Amsterdam Reopens with Sustainability in Mind | Timeout
Madgascar's Lemurs Need Tourism | Nat Geo
Dominica Seeks To Be First Climate Resilient Nation | Devex
Change? Destinations Look to a Greener Future | Guardian

➢ DSC's Destination Monitor and Travindy offer continuing selections of news stories.
Submissions Requested
The Destination Stewardship Report relies entirely on submitted articles and notices, not to mention corrections and suggestions. All submissions must
• pertain to some aspect of destination stewardship,
• be shorter than 1,000 words, and
• avoid self-promotion.
Photos welcome. What story can you tell that would help others?
contact us with your ideas. Your next issue is planned for early October.
Events modified for the Covid-19 pandemic
  • Green Destinations is organizing a cluster of webinars to replace Global Green Destinations Days 2020, 6-8 October
  • GSTC's 2020 Global Sustainable Tourism Conference scheduled for 19-22 November in Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada, has been postponed to October 2021.
Please contact us with your submissions.
Sponsored by: 

Editor – Jonathan B. Tourtellot
Newsletter design and production – Sarah Bacharach
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