The importance of digital technologies in tourism, providing opportunities for innovation and preparing the sector for the future of work, is at the centre of World Tourism Day 2018, to be celebrated in Budapest, Hungary on 27 September 2018. World Tourism Day is celebrated every 27 September around the world, is a unique opportunity to raise awareness on tourism’s actual and potential contribution to sustainable development.
This year’s World Tourism Day (WTD) will help to put the opportunities provided to tourism, by technological advances including big data, artificial intelligence and digital platforms, on the map of sustainable development. The World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) sees digital advances and innovation as part of the solution to the challenge of marrying continued growth with a more sustainable and responsible tourism sector.
“Harnessing innovation and digital advances provides tourism with opportunities to improve inclusiveness, local community empowerment and efficient resource management, amongst other objectives within the wider sustainable development agenda”, said UNWTO Secretary-General Zurab Pololikashvili.
The WTD official celebration will be held in Budapest, Hungary, a country enjoying steady growth of tourism backed by consistent policy support and a commitment to the digital future. Other celebrations will take place worldwide.
The official celebration will also see the announcement of the semi-finalists of the 1st UNWTO Tourism Startup Competition, launched by UNWTO and Globalia to give visibility to startups with innovative ideas capable of revolutionising the way we travel and enjoy tourism.
News Update| 20 July 2018| Tourism and Construction have Power to Lead Move to Sustainable Economies
From infrastructure and communication to food production and transport, tourism and construction play key roles in a circular economy framework that supports sustainable development. The World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO), together with the Sustainable Buildings and Construction Programme of the One Planet Network, addressed this challenge during the United Nations High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (9-18 July, New York, USA).
Tourism and construction are part of the overall economic value chain. Best practices in circular economy thinking that can help these large economic sectors shift to sustainable consumption and production (SCP) were at the centre of the event ‘Tourism & Construction: Circular Economy solutions for SDG12’ organised by UNWTO.
Advancing sustainability in the tourism sector and fulfilling its responsibility in the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is a task that benefits from new technological advances, continuous innovation and the strengthening of models such as the circular economy. Especially in view of SDG12 on ‘sustainable consumption and production patterns’, and considering the need to grow responsibly as a sector overall, tourism has an important role to play in the decoupling of economic development from resource use.
With its vast links to other economic activities and direct interaction between consumer and producer, tourism can – if managed well – create positive, long-lasting impacts that go well beyond the sector. Adapting circular production and consumption patterns that accelerate sustainability is therefore key to the long-term health and resilience of tourism businesses and destinations.
The 17 SDGs represent a common vision for prosperity, equality, justice and climate action, brought together under the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Goal 12 calls for more responsible SCP patterns and practices across sectors, with the One Planet Multi-Partner Trust Fund for SDG 12, inaugurated on 17 July 2018, to support partners’ commitments to accelerating this shift. The Fund is a joint effort of the UN Environment Programme, the Food and Agriculture Organization, UNWTO, UN-Habitat and the UN Office for Project Serv