An ambitious global agenda, the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) aim to end poverty, fight inequality and injustice, and solve climate change by 2030. And at the United Nations High-Level Political Forum in New York last month, an online platform was launched to engage the tourism industry in its efforts to achieve these wide reaching objectives.
Developed by the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) with the support of Switzerland’s State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO), Tourism4SDGs.org is a co-creation space that allows users from international organizations and public bodies to individual travellers to access a wide range of resources related to tourism and sustainable development. The site also encourages visitors to add their own initiatives, research findings and projects, and share content.
The platform’s main 'Learn, Share and Act' features serve as a call to action, aiming not only to educate but also to foster conversation and collaboration, with a view to increasing tourism competitiveness for sustainability, shaping tourism policy, fostering improved allocation of resources and encouraging responsible travel.
The economic relevance of tourism, representing up to 10% of the world’s GDP and employment, makes harnessing its full potential essential for the advancement of the SDGs. “Tourism plays a vital role in many, if not all, of the 17 Goals," said UNWTO Secretary-General Zurab Pololikashvili. “Tourism has come of age as a cross-cutting economic activity with deep social ramifications, and the Tourism for SDGs Platform is providing the global tourism community with a space to co-create and engage to realize the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development,” he said.