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Tourism Around Europe
jlag newsletter issue n. 9 - OCTOBER 2013 Friday 11 October 2013
A conversation with...
Tourism Observatory
Funding opportunities
On our bookshelf
The European Tourism Agenda

Welcome to the 9th issue of Tourism Around Europe.

With this issue, “Tourism Around Europe” celebrates its 2 years. Many things have happened since the first issue was launched in Sept 2011 with an interview to Mr. Antonio Tajani, Vice-President of the European Commission. Among many EU initiatives, we would like to highlight the following key actions: the first EU tourism campaign "Europe - Whenever You're Ready"; the EURES job online platform; the European Tourism Indicators System (ETIS): for Sustainable Management at Destination Level; the E-Calypso platform and the new European tourism itineraries.

Since the first issue, we have learned and achieved a lot; awareness concerning the importance of sustainability in tourism and of the sector’s contribution to socio-economic activities is rising, as shown by an Ernst and Young study, stating that hospitality plays a critical role in fighting youth unemployment and is essential for job creation and growth. But there is still much to be done.

In this issue we talk about sustainable tourism, social tourism, industrial heritage, the hospitality sector, the latest studies and statistics on European tourism, funding opportunities and new projects. On our bookshelf, you will find a guidebook, Sustainable Tourism for Development, and a report on industrial heritage and rural tourism.

Bearing in mind the upcoming European Social Tourism Forum 2013, we interviewed for our "A conversation with" section Mr. Jean Marc Mignon, President of ISTO – International Social Tourism Organisation. Founded in 1963, ISTO aims at “favoring the development of social tourism in the international framework”. The organisation promotes access to leisure, holidays and tourism to the greatest number of people - youth, families, seniors and disabled people.

The latest analysis of the statistics regarding tourism in Europe reveals some interesting conclusions: despite the current financial situation in the Old Continent, tourism flows are positive. During the last winter, in 15 out of 22 Member States, the number of nights spent at hotels and similar accommodation establishments recorded positive growth rates. According to the latest UNWTO data, international tourist arrivals grew by 5% in Europe, during the first half of 2013, led by Central and Eastern Europe (+10%) and Southern and Mediterranean Europe (+6%).

The European Commission is funding different projects in order to improve the tourism competiveness in Europe. We bring to this issue 2 new projects: the MEET – Mediterranean Experience of Ecotourism project aims to define a Mediterranean Eco-Tourism planning scheme; on the other hand, T-GuiDE addresses two major issues in the current panorama: the need to create new market/job opportunities and increase social inclusion.

Finally, we would like to thank you for your encouraging interest in Tourism Around Europe. We wish you happy autumn days.

Silvia Barbone
Jlag Managing Director

The next “Tourism Around Europe” newsletter will be issued in January 2013

« Tourism Around Europe » is a quarterly newsletter for competitive tourism in Europe. Our aim is to disseminate European tourism policies and practices. We wish to encourage the exchange of knowledge regarding European tourism themes, actions and challenges. Each issue includes a conversation with influential leaders and thinkers within the sector.

A conversation with...

Jean Marc Mignon, President of ISTO – International Social Tourism Organisation.

In the occasion of the European Social Tourism Forum 2013 and the ISTO 50th anniversary, Jlag has the pleasure to interview Mr. Jean Marc Mignon, President of ISTO. Founded in 1963, ISTO aims at “favouring the development of social tourism in the international framework”. As of now, ISTO counts more than 165 member organizations in almost 35 countries. Here is the official website:

  • We wish to open the conversation with a short explanation about social tourism nowadays.  Which is the best definition to mainstream?  Which are the main challenges?

“Social tourism” is, indeed, an expression which is not understood the same way in all countries; that is why, at ISTO, we like to speak of “tourism for all”, meaning that our ambition is to give access to tourism and holidays away from home to more people.

A second point which should be added is that “social tourism” is the combination of two aspects: the action of the tourism operators which identify themselves as actors of social tourism, either in favour of children and youth, families with low wages, or senior citizens and disabled people, and the action of public authorities which, through specific dispositions or policies, contribute to facilitate the access to tourism or holidays (for instance through the creation of “holiday checks”).

We see “social tourism” as a concept having a real modernity, as the rate of those who can afford going on holidays has been declining in for the last few years, even in .wealthy countries, not to mention continents like Africa or South America.

full interview

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Tourism Observatory

The Hospitality Sector in Europe, an assessment of the economic contribution of the hospitality sector across 31 countries

A new Europe-wide study by Ernst and Young shows the hospitality sector plays a critical role in fighting youth unemployment and is essential for jobs, growth and health of other sectors. The study, backed by HOTREC and The Brewers, found that Europe’s hospitality sector in 2010 directly or indirectly created 1 trillion Euros in output, equal to 8.1% of the EU’s total economic output, and that the multiplier effect of €1 spent in the hospitality sector means another €1.16 invested in the wider economy. During the launch event in the European Parliament in Brussels, MEPs and the sectoral associations HOTREC and The Brewers of Europe call for more-supportive EU policies to boost the sector’s performance.  The event host, UK MEP Emma McClarkin, said “Beer is more than just a refreshing drink. The brewing sector is a key part of the hospitality sector. At a time of stagnating economic growth and spiralling youth unemployment, and given the importance of the hospitality sector as a driver of growth and jobs, we need to be sure that policies are helping hospitality and closely linked sectors, such as beer, and not hindering them.”

To read the full report, click here

UNWTO approves accessible tourism recommendations

The UNWTO recommendations on « Accessible Tourism for all » (2013) have been approved and endorsed by the General Assembly. The recommendations outline a form of tourism that involves a collaborative process among stakeholders to enable people with access requirements to function independently through universally designed tourism products, services and environments.

In the European Union, by 2050, the number of people over 65 will be 3 times what it was in 2003, and the population over 80 will be 5 times greater in number. The European Commission is committed in improving the accessibility of tourism services and to increase the quality for all tourists, as well as improving the quality of life in local communities. The EU issued a call for tender to gather knowledge about the demand and the behavioural profile of travellers with special access needs, and to assess the economic impact of accessible tourism.

To read more on UNWTO « Accessible Tourism » recommendations approval, click here

To know more about the EU Commission DG Enterprise and Industry call for tender on Accessible Tourism , click here

Tourism recorded positive growth rates in overnight accommodation in most EU countries during the winter season 2012-2013

A Eurostat analysis of the winter 2012-2013 tourism trends shows that 15 out of 22 Member states where data is available, nights spent at hotels and similar accommodation establishments recorded positive growth rates during the winter season 2012-2013, compared with the same period of the previous year. The highest increases were observed in Slovakia (+9.6 %) and Malta (+9.0 %). Nevertheless, this positive growth is not reflected in the EU-28 figures where a drop of -0.4 % was observed. The most popular destinations for tourists travelling outside their own country during the winter season 2012-2013 were Spain, Italy and Austria.

For more information, click here

International tourism demand exceeds expectations in the first half of 2013 

International tourist arrivals grew by 5 % during the first half of 2013, compared to the same period of 2012, reaching almost 500 million, according to data just released by the UNWTO. Growth was above the projection made at the beginning of the year (+3 to 4 %) and is also exceeding the trend of the UNWTO long-term outlook Tourism Towards 2030 (+ 3.8 % a year).

Despite uneven global economic environment, results were positive in all regions and sub-regions, though the overall picture was mixed. Positive performance were shown in Europe (+5 %), driven by Central and Eastern Europe (+10 %) and Southern and Mediterranean Europe (+6 %). Asia and Pacific exceeded expectations, boosted by South-East Asia (+12 %) and South-Asia (+7 %). On the other hand, results were weaker than anticipated in the Americas (+2%) as South America and the Caribbean lagged behind.

For more information, click here


The Mediterranean Experience of EcoTourism- MEET

The Mediterranean Experience of Ecotourism (MEET) project involves 10 countries of the Mediterranean: Italy, France, Spain, Jordan, Lebanon, Egypt, Malta, Cyprus, Greece and Tunisia in the framework of cross-border cooperation within the European Neighborhood Policy Instrument (ENPI Med), under the strategic line “Promoting the sustainable tourism in the socio-economic development and enhancement of territories”.

The aim of the project is to define a Mediterranean Eco-Tourism planning scheme, a formal cross-border agreement for cooperating in Eco-tourism development and the establishment of a Mediterranean ecotourism planning scheme Secretariat and network in Malaga to capitalize the project results and the sustainability of the project after its end.

Website: UICN- Union Internationale pour la Conservation de la Nature

For more information, e-mail to Miss Carla Danelutti:

Tourist Guides for People with Intellectual Disabilities in Europe

The T-GuiDE project addresses two needs in Europe today:

  1. To increase new market/job opportunities ;
  2. To increase social inclusion.

The EU is fighting the increasing unemployment and the related strain on social inclusion as consequence of global crisis, whose tourism is one of the « at risk » sectors. Tour operators/actors are asking for new policies for tourism implementation. On the other hand, there is a big problem of lack of inclusion of disadvantaged people. The main aim of T-Guide is to initiate an EU-wide discussion on tourism guiding for people with intellectual disabilities and to build a common guide for training Tourist guides, in terms of common principles, methodologies and recommendations to work on social inclusion, skills implementation and new job opportunities.

Website : Lebenshilfe

For more information, e-mail to Miss Joanna Ilkow

Sustainable tourism itineraries in Europe 

To support long-term sustainable tourism practices, the European Commission DG Enterprise and Industry is promoting and funding 5 projects to strengthen transnational cooperation, regarding sustainable tourism, to encourage a higher involvement of small and micro enterprises and local authorities and stimulate competitiveness of the tourism industry by means of an enhanced focus on the diversification of sustainable thematic tourism products.

To view all projects, follow the link :

More details on the explanation of individual projects will follow up in Jlag blog

Funding opportunities

Facilitating transnational low season tourism exchanges in Europe encouraging Senior Citizens to travel

Publication: June 27th, 2013

Deadline: September 26th, 2013

Useful link:


Design, Implementation, Promotion and Marketing of Accessible Tourism Itineraries 

Publication: August 26th, 2013

Deadline: October 22nd 2013

Useful link:


European Tourism Indicators System: for Sustainable Management at Destination Level

The European Tourism indicator system is currently in a testing period. The three pilot phases starting respectively on July 15th 2013, December 1st 2013 and February 1st 2015 are scheduled.

For more information, please follow this link:


Mapping and performance check of the supply side of tourism education and training

Publication: September 4th, 2013

Deadline: October 24th, 2013



UNWTO- United Nations Tourism Organization

Awards for Excellence and Innovation in Tourism

Deadline: October 1st, 2013

All downloadable documents on the website:


EU Prize for Women innovators

Deadline: October 15th, 2013


European Green capital award

Deadline: October 17th 2013


World Responsible Tourism Awards 2013

Ceremony to be held on November 6th, 2013-World Responsible Tourism Day- at WTM London

On our bookshelf

Guidebook “Sustainable Tourism for Development”

We are pleased to disseminate the Guidebook “Sustainable Tourism for Development” carried out by the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) with the financing of the European Commission Directorate-General Development and Cooperation, within the framework of the project “Enhancing capacities for Sustainable Tourism for Development in Developing Countries”

The Guidebook seeks to enhance the understanding of tourism in all its dimensions and describe how the sector relates to the EU Agenda for Change. This enables EU services in Brussels and the EU Delegations in 180 countries, as well as other development institutions, to include sustainable tourism development in their programme cycles. The guidebook was tested in six developing countries (Botswana, India, Kenya, Vietnam, Senegal and Timor-Leste). The Guidebook is intended to enhance the understanding of tourism as an important contribution to socio-economic growth, trade in services and linkages, job creation, empowerment of women and local communities, poverty reduction, among others, and to minimizing its negative social, cultural or environmental impacts.

To download the guidebook in e-book form, click here

Available in French and English 

Industrial heritage and agri/rural tourism in Europe 

This report provides a description and analysis of how, why, when and where industrial heritage based tourism and rural tourism have developed in Europe. It discusses current issues in those subjects and suggests ways in which both activities could be expanded, made more viable and sustainable, and so deliver greater economic, environmental and socio-cultural benefits for the local communities involved and for Europe as a whole. It presents a series of case studies of organizations, enterprises, communities and regions in a number of European countries that have had a range of experiences in these sectors.

To read the full publication, visit the EU book shop

The European Tourism Agenda

October 1st-3rd2013, 7th European Social Tourism Forum: Social Tourism: what future in Europe? Floreal Blankenberge (Belgium) & October 4th 2013- ISTO 50th Anniversary, European Parliament, Brussels ( Belgium). Organized by ISTO, International Social Tourism Organization

October 1st-4th 2013:  7th International Conference on Responsible Tourism in Destinations, Barcelona (Spain).Organized by  the Responsible Tourism Observatory at TSI-TurismeSantIgnasi (Universitat Ramon Llull) jointly with ICRT Barcelona Catalunya on behalf of the Dirección General de Turisme (Catalan Government Tourism Ministry), AgenciaCatalana de Turisme (Catalan Tourism Board), Ajuntament de Barcelona (Barcelona City Council), Diputación de Barcelona (Barcelona Provincial Council) and Tursime de Barcelona (Barcelona Tourism Board).

October 3rd – 5th  2013: International Conference: Sustainability issues and challenges in Tourism, Istanbul ( Turkey). Organized by Boğaziçi University and New Buckinghamshire University

October 3rd -5th 2013: Cultural Corridor Via Diagonalis- Cultural Tourism without boundaries, Sofia (Bulgaria) and Belgrade ( Serbia). Organized by the Tourism Department at the South West University (Bulgaria), Faculty of Geography at the University of Belgrade ( Serbia), Department of Economics and organization of tourism at the University of Economics, Varna, International University College in Dobrich (Bulgaria), the Union of Scientists in Bulgaria and the Department of Culture Studies at SWU (Bulgaria)

October 8th 2013: Creative Tourism Development: creating jobs among Europe’s regions, Brussels (Belgium). Organized by the Committee of the Regions (CoR) and the Commission’s Directorate-General for Regional Policy (DE REGIO)

October 9th, 2013: Business? Culture? Tourism? Take your pick! Brainstorm ideas to boost growth and jobs, Brussels (Belgium)Organized by the Committee of the Regions (CoR) and the Commission’s Directorate-General for Regional Policy (DG REGIO)

November 4th-7th WTM Responsible Tourism- World Travel Market- the leading Global event for the Travel industry, London (UK) Programme of events: here:

November 6th, 2013 Tourism and Biodiversity in Protected Areas, 8th European Charter Network Meeting and Charter Awards 2013, Brussels ( Belgium).Organized by EUROPARC, in collaboration with the Marche Region- Registration are open from September 9th 2013

November 8th -11th 2013, Salon International du Tourisme et des voyages- 4èmes Assises Internationales du Tourisme et de l’économie Solidaire, Colmar (France). Organized in parternship with Tourisme Sans Frontières and sponsored by the French Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs

November 19th-20th, 2013 Seminar on Employment in Tourism - Realizing its Full Potential, Malaga ( Spain). Organized by the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) and “Escuela de Organización Industrial” (EOI) with support of Malaga Valley

November 26th-2th 2013European Development Days, Brussels (Belgium). Organized by the European Commission

December 2nd  2013, European Realities of responsible tourism, Brussels- Belgium, Organized by EARTH, European Alliance for Responsible Tourism and Hospitality 

December 4th 2013 European Day of Tourism, Brussels (Belgium)

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