Announcing the Responsible Tourism Programme for London Travel Week and WTM Virtual

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Throughout two unique events, WTM Virtual and London Travel Week have gathered an unrivalled selection of voices to explore the way forward for responsible tourism.

On November 4, London Travel Week will host a series of one to one interviews with leaders from across the industry. Each of these speakers will be in conversation with WTM Responsible Tourism Advisor Professor Harold Goodwin.

Professor Goodwin will hold conversations with leaders of companies ranging from the Sustainable Hospitality Alliance from 12.00-12.15, TUI at 13.00-13.15 and easyJet holidays at 16.00-16.30 to ABTA at 16.30-16.50 and Responsible Travel at 12.30-12.45.

This year’s keynote is delivered by  Sir Tim Smit, co-founder of the Eden Project, on the importance of responsible business (11.45-12.00).

Other conversations that day explore the power of storytelling with the sustainable tourism writer and founder of the responsible tourism platform Rooted, JoAnna Haugen at 12.45-13.00; and learn from Costa Rica’s tourism minister as to what the country, long a pioneer in sustainable tourism, sees as the way forward taking place at 13.15-13.30.

This day will also see the announcement of the World Responsible Tourism Awards for 2020 (11.30-11.45).

This year the judges have chosen to focus all of their awards on how companies and organisations have responded to the COVID crisis. The categories this year are Business Support, Meaningful Connections, Domestic Tourism, Community Support, Innovation, Neighbours and Employees, and Wildlife.

The following week, the responsible tourism programme takes place across two days of WTM Virtual, with eight conference sessions beginning together a range of voices from across the world.

There are four sessions on Tuesday, November 10.

Resilience & COVID 19 (10.30-11.30) brings together representatives of Radisson Hotels, Visit Cornwall, WTTC, The Commons Project and Barcelona Tourism to discuss how tourism can find a path through this crisis.

Build Back Better (12.00-13.00) explores how we ensure the future of tourism is more sustainable than the past, with speakers from Euromonitor, the German National Tourist Board, VisitScotland, South Africa Tourism and My Green Butler.

Tourism and Biodiversity, Friend or Foe (14.00-15.00), asks what the industry can do to address one of the other significant crises facing the world. It features leaders from the World Tourism Forum, the Elephant Protection Initiative, the Travel Corporation, Responsible Travel and Apamind.

The final session of the day is on Decarbonising Aviation (15.30-16.30) with a range of experts from Heathrow, Sunvil Holidays, Easyjet and Universal Hydrogen Co discussing how to tackle the most significant climate challenge for tourism.

The first session on Wednesday, November 11 focusses on Responsible Tourism in India – (10.30 am-11.30 am).

Speakers from three states – Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and Kerala, will explore what the country is doing to develop its position as a leading destination for responsible tourism.

Later that day Racism in Tourism (14.00-15.00) brings together the President of the Black Travel Alliance, the President of the Indigenous Tourism Association of Canada, and the Experientialist in Chief of OutThere to discuss how racism affects tourism and what can be done about it.

Certification and Consumer Choice (15.30-16.30) hears from Greenview’s Eric Ricaurte and Kelly Bricker from the University of Utah’s Department of Parks, Recreation, and Tourism as to how, in the covid-altered world, certification can be used to both make tourists more confident and tourism more responsible.

The final session this year asks the key question: Can we make tourism better? (17.00-18.00).

It features Justin Francis, the CEO of Responsible Travel; John Swarbrooke, Director of J and S Consultancy Limited; Eugenio Yunis, Advisor to the Board of Directors, FEDETUR, the Chilean Federation of Tourism Companies; and Manda Brookman, Director of Permanently Brilliant. Together they will explore the principles, practices and pathways the industry needs to follow to forge a brighter future.

All sessions can be watched live or on catch up on the WTM Virtual Platform.

All times are local in the UK.