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Training on Tourism and Biodiversity: Understanding Tourism Trends and Biodiversity Conservation for Innovative Products and Marketing
Wadden Sea Biosphere Reserve
Schleswig - Holstein (Germany)
14 – 26 April 2013
The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) is pleased to announce its second extensive and in depth Training on Tourism and Biodiversity.
This twelve-day course is organized around core segments on tourism and biodiversity: biodiversity concepts and methods, marketing, cooperation with sales partners and communication. Furthermore, the integration of biodiversity into tourism development, opportunities and weaknesses of tourism practices are core training elements. Experts from UNWTO, the scientific and the private sector will present their experiences and latest techniques on topics such as tourism trends, innovation, experiences and products. Leading experts from international organizations, NGO’s and other specialists will share information on planning tools and techniques and financial instruments.
The course will combine presentations with practical examples, knowledge exchange and technical visits to support and ensure successful biodiversity-based tourism product development. Training modules are interactive, applying practical and innovative approaches, and provide a thorough understanding of the CBD “Guidelines on Biodiversity and Tourism Development” http://www.cbd.int/doc/publications/tou-gdl-en.pdf.
The course is aimed at national and local authorities, the private tourism sector and NGOs involved in biodiversity and tourism.
The training course, organized with the support of the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety, will be held in English for up to 30 participants from UNWTO Member States between 14 – 26 April 2013 at the Wadden Sea Biosphere Reserve of Schleswig – Holstein, Germany. Given its location, emphasis will be on coastal tourism.
For additional information, please contact the UNWTO Consulting Unit on Tourism and Biodiversity by Phone: +49-228-81505551, Fax: +49-228-8150554 or email: [email protected].
All application documents are in the download section at the bottom of this page.
Summary of the first Training Course on Tourism and Biodiversity: 21 October - 2 November 2012
The UNWTO training course on tourism and biodiversity took place in the Bavarian part of the German UNESCO Rhoen Biosphere Reserve which includes areas from the Federal States Bavaria, Hesse and Thuringia, from 21 October – 2 November 2012. The training course was supported by the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety and aimed at building the capacities of governmental staff from specialized tourism and conservation agencies on tourism and biodiversity.
Taleb Rifai, UNWTO Secretary-General, thanked the German Government for its support and said: “This course corresponds fully to the UNWTO mission on education and training, enabling Member States to devise and implement the education and training policies, plans and tools that fully harness the employment potential of their tourism sectors and effectively enhance its competitiveness and sustainability. In this United Nations Decade on Biodiversity, UNWTO is supporting its Members in their capacity to take responsibility for the wellbeing of biodiversity; tourism’s natural capital.”
The twelve-day training course offered eighteen tourism ministry representatives from Albania, Argentina, Austria, Bhutan, Brazil, Egypt, Haiti, Georgia, Kuwait, Latvia, Lesotho, Madagascar, Myanmar, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, The Gambia and Uganda, as well as two non-governmental representatives from Poland and South Africa, the opportunity to experience the practical features and characteristics of the UNESCO Rhoen Biosphere Reserve. A balanced distribution of gender, age and country of origin of the participants provided excellent conditions for the success of the training course. The local managers of the Biosphere Reserve provided an introduction to the current trends and issues related to the management of the protected area. Altogether, the lecturers came from the private and scientific sector, non-governmental organizations, UNESCO and UNWTO. The approaches included the identification of unique selling propositions of biodiversity-based tourism products and measures for effective product development and marketing. Moreover, group work provided further opportunities for the exchange of ideas, opinions and experience between the participants. In order to share the information and results of this training course with a broader audience, an E-learning tool will be developed to be made available to UNWTO Member States.
The training course provided the participants with new knowledge related to further developing the potential of biodiversity-related tourism. In particular, the development of methodologies and destination marketing concepts enhanced the participants’ areas of expertise. A public participant blog has been established under http://www.tourism-biodiversity.com, which serves as basis for further exchange after the completion of the training course. Reflecting on the training course, participant Fernney Piou from Haiti said: “This experience has been unforgettable; we have learnt a lot and are ready to share this knowledge with our colleagues and members of the tourism sector in our own countries”. Eventually, there is a growing need for regular trainings in the field of tourism and biodiversity by providing tourism managers the opportunity for exchange with other experts.
Many of the participants showed interest in implementing new skills and techniques in their home regions and countries. According to the participants, lessons learned from the training course which could be applied in their home countries include the creation of sustainable area management action plans, the design of effective tools for marketing tourism products and the introduction of best practice trainings for stakeholders from the private sector. The involvement of local communities and other stakeholders remains a significant responsibility at the start of each new planning process. The importance of this last point was broadly recognized by the participating tourism managers. In this regard, new approaches will be implemented in order to increase sustainability for local populations.
In the future, tourists should be educated more effectively about the value of nature and its conservation. Furthermore, the roles and responsibilities among stakeholders should be defined in more detail by establishing more synergies. In terms of conservation areas, information and experiences should be shared more efficiently. It is also necessary to establish more sustainable tourism projects.
Supported with funds from the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety