Last week at the World Travel & Tourism Council’s Global Summit held in Las Vegas, Nevada, GSTC Executive Director Erika Harms spent some time chatting with TravelMole TV’s Charles Kao.

Erika discusses a number of issues about GSTC’s future education outreach to providers and consumers, the growing demand for sustainable tourism, new partnerships with Amadeus and LOHAS, the applicability of the GSTC Criteria to the various tourism sectors, and what’s in store over the next year, namely the expansion of the GSTC Criteria into the realm of destination management:

“For the first set of Criteria we reached to over 80,000 constituents. Now our network is bigger and we hope to have even more feedback to the process… Because of their characteristics, we’re piloting with several different destinations before we launch the criteria. Once the theoretical part is over, we’ll take it to implementation…”

When asked about the challenges of applying a global standard at the local level, Erika looked to the government of India who has recently engaged on a process of developing a catalogue of regional standards and certification programs. The GSTC Criteria are used as a baseline and stakeholder-driven consultation provides additional criteria as necessary to meet the local context.

The GSTC along with several members attended the WTTC Global Summit in support of the Tourism for Tomorrow awards awarded to businesses, destinations, and organizations making strides in sustainability.