Ministry of Environment of the Slovak Republic

Anotácie - Annotations

Benefits Beyond Inscription


Plenary Session I – Policy Actions for Sustainable Tourism Development

How does sustainability look like? What do we mean when we say sustainable tourism? It is tourism that generates sustainable socio-economic development and equitably contributes tangible as well as intangible benefits to local and regional communities in ways that are consistent with the conservation of the properties. It means that all stakeholders should cooperate through effective partnerships to maximise conservation and presentation outcomes, whilst minimising threats and adverse impacts from tourism.

The aim of the Plenary Session is to introduce policies, strategies and plans related to the sustainable tourism development from a wide range of stakeholders - state and public administration, local government, international organizations and business.

Plenary Session II – Sustainable Tourism Development – Best Practices

To succeed in tourism development requires to identify and promote authentic, sustainable and responsible tourism products and services, refined business and development plan, sufficient support from local authorities, but mostly a great idea what would you like to do with it. Something that will make you more attractive, tempting and valuable that competitor owns. Information sharing, networking and collaboration among stakeholders, and establish links to training, education and research. Identify and support approaches to increase knowledge, understanding and appreciation of the principles of the sustainable tourism development. Relevant data generation and quality analyses on visitation, impacts and trends, and increase the availability of good practices and lessons learned through information sharing and recognition mechanisms.

The aim of the Plenary Session is to introduce the selection of successful projects from various European countries.

Parallel Session I

Panel I – Financing the Sustainable Tourism Development

Cultural tourism presently accounts for close to 40 per cent of world tourism revenues. Cultural heritage sites in general, and in particular, those inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List, generate substantial revenues and employment from tourism. The same applies to intangible cultural heritage, which sustains living cultural expressions and traditional know-how, as well as performing arts. Museums and other cultural institutions also significantly contribute to economic investments and benefits. Therefore, identifying tourism as a subsector for investment would encourage investment in infrastructure and stimulate local development. Tourism is the most significant link between heritage assets and sustainable development. It means that all stakeholders should cooperate through effective partnerships to maximise conservation and presentation outcomes, whilst minimising threats and adverse impacts from tourism.

Due to its capacity for creation of employment, poverty reduction, human development and environmental sustainability, tourism can benefit countries in a number of ways offering an opportunity for all-inclusive growth. Development opportunities through tourism represent an important factor for the overall national growth in many countries. In terms of technical assistance key themes emerge:


The aim of the Panel is to introduce possibilities and programs to create, develop and finance UNESCO Brand projects and to support sustainable tourism development.


Panel II – Natural and Cultural Heritage and Traditions as an Opportunity for All

It is through heritage preservation that we conserve our cultural, social and economic values. And it is indeed these values that shape our identity, which in turn form an irreplaceable source of inspiration and emotion and sense of place needed for tourism development both now and for future generations.

The degradation of heritage values – or damage to the natural, cultural, tangible and intangible heritage – not only constitutes an irremediable loss for all humanity, but also an economic loss linked to the intense global competition between destinations as the attractiveness of these heritage values decreases. Intangible heritage is most at risk from the negative impacts linked to globalization but it offers assets that can be used by the tourism industry. This is of particular concern for emerging and developing countries where heritage tourism is a considerable opportunity for economic development and poverty alleviation but may not be sufficiently prepared to mitigate this threat. Poorly managed and uncontrolled tourism can thus be a major threat for the values of heritage and for long term economic development as a result of a degraded, less attractive and less competitive destination. The way forward therefore will be an approach where preservation goes hand in hand with the sustainable development of tourism and planning is harmonized.

The aim of the Panel is to explain how natural and cultural heritage and traditions should be the opportunity for tourism development, increasing of locality attractiveness and bringing the various benefits and economic growth to the regions and localities.

Parallel Session II

Panel III – World Heritage and Sustainable Tourism in the Carpathians

The Carpathians are one of Europe´s largest mountain ranges, a unique natural treasure of great beauty and ecological value, and home of the headwater of major rivers. They also constitute a major ecological, economic, cultural, recreational and living environment in the heart of Europe, shared by numerous people and countries.

The aim of this Panel is to present Carpathian World Heritage and its potential for sustainable tourism. It will look for possible synergies between UNESCO World Heritage - Sustainable Tourism Programme and the UN Environment in the framework of the Carpathian Convention, which could materialise in a Memorandum of Cooperation, to be possibly signed during the Fifth Meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Carpathian Convention, 10 - 12 October, Lillafured, Hungary, bridging the two events and conveying a message of the importance and benefits of the cultural and natural heritage for the region.  

Panel IV – Destination Management in UNESCO Sites

Destination Management should seek close alignment and open dialogue with the tourism sector and promote sustainable tourism at the tourist destinations with focus on developing, promoting and providing quality products and services for the visitors as well as a contributions to the long-term viability and conservation of the localities and cultural or natural heritage. If undertaken responsibly, tourism can be a positive force for sustainable development, conservation and environmental protection - but if unplanned, tourism can be socially, culturally and economically disruptive, and have a devastating effect on fragile environments. The way forward therefore will be an approach where preservation goes hand in hand with the sustainable development of tourism and planning is harmonized. This is at the forefront of what UNESCO will try and achieve in its work on sustainable tourism. There is an international framework for the cooperative and coordinated achievement of shared and sustainable outcomes related to tourism at World Heritage properties including sustainability, national pride, community benefit, economic development and heritage conservation is UNESCO World Heritage and Sustainable Tourism Programme, adopted by the World Heritage Committee in 2012 at 36COM in St. Petersburg.

The aim of the Panel is to introduce key features, overall objectives and key activities of UNESCO in UNESCO sites.

Sustainable development is development that “meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs”[1]

[1] World Heritage Tourism Programme, WHC-12/36.COM/5E. The concept of “sustainable development”, as defined by the World Commission on Environment and Development in “Our Common Future” (1987), will guide the overall Programme orientation.