The International Ecotourism Society’s New Award Recognizes Innovation Leaders Uniting Conservation, Communities and Sustainable Travel
The International Ecotourism Society (TIES), as part of a series of initiatives commemorating the 20th anniversary of the founding of the world’s oldest and largest association dedicated to promoting ecotourism, has launched the annual “Innovation Leadership in Sustainable Tourism Awards” to recognize and honor accomplishments by sustainable tourism leaders and pioneers.
The Innovation Award has been created by TIES to recognize those individuals and organizations who demonstrate leadership in innovative actions that effectively promote sustainable tourism and bring tangible benefits to communities and conservation. The Award winners ˆ one individual and one organization ˆ will be honored for their best practices and innovative actions, judged based on one example of an innovative project, product, or program developed in the previous year that supports the goal of uniting communities, conservation, and sustainable travel.
Said Ayako Ezaki of TIES “The idea came about initially from discussions among some of us involved in the program development for this year’s Ecotourism and Sustainable Tourism Conference (ESTC). We received a record number of speaker applications (over 170) from around the world, and we had an amazing opportunity to get to know various projects, success stories, ideas and lessons learned that we thought were a great collection of knowledge, experience and resources.”
“One of the most significant trends we noted was increasing awareness of the need for creative approaches and innovative solutions addressing today’s sustainability challenges in travel and tourism. No doubt this was in part because of the experience with the global economic downturn and its negative impact on tourism businesses. However, we feel that rather than discussing what happened as a result of the economic crisis, we have a unique opportunity now to focus on sustainability and authenticity as effective responses to the fundamental change that the travel industry has experienced in recent years, and to foster dialogues about business opportunities, environmental solutions and community initiatives.”
“It is in this context that we decided to create an award program that recognize those who are making a positive difference through leadership and innovative actions in sustainable tourism. We thought that this year’s ESTC will be a perfect venue to launch the award, as 2010 is the 20th anniversary of our organization, which we consider to be not only a wonderful occasion to celebrate, but also, most importantly, a tribute to our members from around the world who continue to promote the goal of uniting conservation, communities, and sustainable travel. “
“We look forward to learning about best practice examples of innovation leaders who are implementing unique, innovative, out-of-the-box approaches to ecotourism and sustainable travel. In addition to the award presentation ceremony at the ESTC, we also plan to use various channels (e.g. blog, member publications) to share many of the innovative project and product development examples that are submitted through the award program. “
Nominations are being accepted now for the 2010 TIES Innovation Awards. Nominations must be received no later than Midnight Monday, August 2, 2010 US Pacific Daylight Time. The winning two finalists will be honored at the Ecotourism and Sustainable Tourism Conference (www.ecotourismconference.org), being held from September 8-10, 2010, Portland, Oregon, USA. The Innovation Award Presentation Ceremony will be held annually during the ESTC, to be hosted by TIES and ESTC sponsors.
More information on TIES Innovation Awards and nomination instructions are available at: www.ecotourism.org/innovation-awards.
Valere Tjolle is editor of the Sustainable Tourism Report Suite, special offer at: www.travelmole.com/stories/1142003.php
This article is uploaded by Majbritt Thomsen, administrator on ‘Views On Tourism’