The European tourism industry was strongly affected by the COVID-19 crisis. As a result of this, awareness and understanding of sustainability has been raised by the crisis, creating momentum to rebuild a more resilient tourism industry. The project European Tourism Sustainability Monitoring 2030 (ETSM2030) is funded by the European Union (EU) to foster sustainability certification and sustainability knowledge within Small and Medium Tourism Enterprises (SMTEs) as well as bring together sustainably working SMTEs in a network, where exchange is encouraged.
The ETSM2030 project aims at establishing a network of SMTEs to increase sustainability monitoring by co-creating and co-implementing Sustainable Innovation Projects and by boosting participation in relevant sustainable certification schemes, in particular the EU Ecolabel and the Eco-Management and Audit Scheme (EMAS).The ETSM2030 project team set criteria for the selection of 84 SMTEs, and the selection of the SMTEs was made via an open call in six EU countries (Austria, Germany, Italy, Poland, Romania and Slovenia). The SMTEs which will participate in the program will be boosted in their sustainability performance. In the first step, the status quo of the SMTEs’ sustainability awareness, practices and monitoring is assessed. In the second step the ETSM2030 will improve the knowledge level about sustainability monitoring and actions by developing a sustainability monitoring tool which is suitable for the SMTEs and can easily be integrated in their daily routines. Through this monitoring and indicator system and by using digital tools, the sustainability practices among the participating European SMTEs can be benchmarked. Then, the participating SMTEs receive specific trainings and coaching about sustainability, how to monitor it and to take advantage of a collaborative learning platform. Also, the SMTEs reveal potential for Sustainability Innovation Projects.
Due to these learning effects and the cross-border exchange of the SMTEs, they are encouraged to apply for established sustainability certification schemes (EU-standards) and be part of the Sustainability European SMTE Innovation Network of Excellence (SESTINE).
The Project Consortium for this project consists of eight partners out of six different countries: Austria, Germany, Italy, Slovenia, Romania and Poland. The project partners combine science and practice: not only universities, but also Innsbruck Tourism as a Destination Management Organization and experts in the field of sustainability in practice (EURAC and TourCert) are part of the ETSM2023 Consortium. The project lasts for 3 years and will end in 2025. The IMC Krems project team consists of Prof (FH) Mag. Christian Maurer and Prof (FH) Dr. Claudia Dolezal.