Sustainable Tourism Training for Industry Professionals
The Sustainable Tourism Training Program (STTP) provides the knowledge and resources needed to help improve sustainability practices by tourism industry businesses and destinations. Built on the framework of the GSTC Criteria, the global baseline standards for sustainability in travel and tourism, the STTP training class will help you achieve tangible actions that fulfill the globally recognized standard of sustainability best practices.
Certificate in Sustainable Tourism
By completing this 4-week online training class of the STTP, you will meet the training requirement towards earning the GSTC-endorsed Certificate in Sustainable Tourism. Once you complete the class, you will have have access to the official STTP Exam, and upon successful completion (75% and above passing mark is required), receive a Certificate in Sustainable Tourism by the GSTC.
Course Topics and Objectives
The GSTC Sustainable Tourism Training covers both global and regional perspectives, and offers practical guidance through best practice cases and real-life lessons to help you achieve tangible sustainability performance goals. The training curriculum includes global trends and issues in sustainable tourism, sustainability best practices by businesses and destinations, and lessons on utilizing the GSTC Criteria as a tourism development and management tool.
- Gain an in-depth understanding of sustainable tourism standards and the roles of accreditation and certification bodies in the global tourism industry.
- Be able to make informed decisions on how to implement sustainability practices for your company or destination, utilizing quality sustainable tourism standards as guiding principles.
- Learn how to build and implement viable and actionable sustainable tourism plans for your organization, including effective strategies for sustainability management, partnerships, engagement and marketing.
The GSTC Sustainable Tourism Training online classes are offered quarterly, and delivered in the 4-Week Course format, which combines the convenience of online, on-demand lessons and the benefits of interactive people-focused learning. The class follows a weekly schedule (one module per week), and includes:
- Video lessons and readings that can be accessed at your convenience;
- Hands-on activities to apply your knowledge to your specific real-life, on-the-job practices; and
- Live and interactive components to enhance learning results through sharing ideas and collaborating with each other.
About the GSTC: Global Authority on Sustainable Tourism
The GSTC is an independent and neutral organization, legally registered in the USA as a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that represents a diverse and global membership, including NGO’s, national and provincial governments, leading travel companies, hotels, tour operators, individuals and communities – all striving to achieve best practices in sustainable tourism.
As the global expert in standards for sustainable tourism, the GSTC pursues the goals of:
- Promoting sustainable tourism knowledge and practices;
- Facilitating the adoption of universal sustainable tourism principles; and
- Building demand for sustainable travel.
At the core of this work is the Global Sustainable Tourism Criteria, the guiding principles and minimum requirements that any tourism business or destination should aspire to reach in order to protect and sustain the world’s natural and cultural resources, while ensuring tourism meets its potential as a tool for conservation and poverty alleviation. The GSTC was founded in 2007 by the Rainforest Alliance, the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the United Nations Foundation, and the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), among others.
Week 1: Effective Sustainable Tourism Management
The first module provides an introduction to the GSTC Criteria, the definition and principles of sustainable tourism, and the GSTC's roles in the global tourism industry, and discusses best practices in sustainable tourism management approaches (GSTC Criteria Section A).
- Understand the roles of the GSTC and the GSTC Criteria.
- Learn about and discuss relevant sustainability issues and tourism trends.
- Become familiar with sustainability management principles and discuss best practices.
Week 2: Socioeconomic Impacts and Local Community Benefits
The goal of the second week is both to dive deeper into the GSTC Criteria and to discuss practical steps to applying the Criteria in the real-world context, focused on understanding the socioeconomic impacts of tourism activities, and on effective strategies for reducing negative impacts (GSTC Criteria Section B).
- Understand issues and challenges related to the socioeconomic impacts of tourism.
- Learn about sustainability practices that effectively address the socioeconomic impacts of tourism.
- Discuss practical application of the GSTC Industry Criteria through a business case study.
Week 3: Cultural Heritage Preservation and Promotion
Continuing on with lessons and expert presentations on the GSTC Criteria, this week focuses on how tourism businesses and destinations can minimize negative impacts, maximize benefits to local communities and protect cultural heritage through sustainable tourism (GSTC Criteria Section C).
- Understand issues and challenges related to the impact of tourism on local cultural heritage.
- Learn about best practices on reducing negative impacts of tourism activities on local cultural heritage.
- Discuss how to maximize tourism's benefits for communities, visitors and local cultures through sustainability practices.
Week 4: Resource Management and Environmental Conservation
In the fourth and last module of the course, key strategies for reducing tourism's environmental footprint are presented, and practical action steps in implementing sustainable resource management and conservation practices are discussed (GSTC Criteria Section D).
- Understand issues and challenges related to the environmental impacts of tourism.
- Learn about best practices on reducing footprint and positively contributing to conservation.
- Discuss how to achieve optimal results for the local environment, while supporting business growth.