Sue Millar, President ICOMOS International Scientific Committee on Cultural Tourism

ICOMOS International Scientific Committee on Cultural Tourism is delighted to be associated with the work of GSTC as an Institutional Member. ICOMOS – the International Council on Monuments and Sites – works for the conservation and protection of cultural heritage places.

ICOMOS International Cultural Tourism Committee (ICTC) – a global network of renowned cultural heritage professionals – plays an important role in providing strategic advice on policy formulation at international and national levels. The President has a formal advisory role on UNESCO’s World Heritage Sustainable Tourism Programme.

Cultural Tourism is a growing phenomenon worldwide, steadily increasing its share of the expanding global tourism market. It remains notably resilient in times of political and economic uncertainty. GSTC’s initiative in developing Global Sustainable Tourism Criteria for Destinations is timely.

Strong and effective partnerships between the cultural heritage and tourism sectors – we believe – are the only way forward to achieve greater protection of heritage assets and sustainable development of tourism destinations. GSTC’s Working Group on Destination Stewardship has particular resonance with our own interests.

ICOMOS ICTC was set up over 25 years ago to promote the sustainable development and responsible management of cultural tourism at places of cultural heritage significance – historic towns, cultural landscapes, archaeological sites and cultural routes – including World Heritage Sites.

Our current research programme is focussed on destinations – especially World Heritage Destinations. The Annual Workshop 2013 in Sukhothai, Thailand will explore Living Heritage: Local Benefits and Creative Tourism. Last year we held a successful international conference in Vigan, Philippines on Cultural Tourism for Community Development: 40 Years of the World Heritage Convention.

Since its publication in 1999 the ICOMOS International Cultural Tourism Charter has defined the committee’s work. It is widely recognised internationally for its major contribution to management of tourism at places of cultural heritage significance. We are reviewing how the Charter principles can better support destination management. Available in English, French & Spanish