The following nine tourism toolkits are from a set of courses on Sustainable Tourism that have been developed by USAID, The George Washington University, Solimar International, and other USAID Global Sustainable Tourism Alliance (GSTA) partners. These tookits are the collective result of compiling the lessons and best practices from the GSTA program and a host of other tourism development experiences from around the world. All of the toolkits and other course materials are public access and can be found inside the USAID Natural Resource Management Development Learning Management Center.

Tourism and Conservation – Sustainable Models and Strategies

This toolkit includes two different publications developed with support of USAID aimed at linking tourism and conservation in a sustainable way. The first document was developed by Solimar under USAID’s Program for Management of Aquatic Resources and Economic Alternatives (MAREA). The “Sea Turtles Tourism Conservation Models” describe six conservation models that link sustainable tourism, biodiversity conservation, and community development. This document also contains The Nature Conservancy’s “The Threshold of Sustainability for Tourism within Protected Areas: A Quick Guide for Protected Area Practitioners” document, which provides a framework for responding to challenges originating from tourism and visitation.

Sustainable Tourism Enterprise Development – A Business Planning Approach

Sustainable tourism enterprises confront the challenge to contribute to job creation, biological and cultural diversity conservation. This toolkit was written with these conditions and local stakeholders in mind to help them understand the purpose of a business plan, its audiences, what should be included, and the unique aspects of tourism business plans that can address community support and biodiversity conservation. By drafting a business plan, you will utilize your human and financial resources more effectively, minimize risk, prepare for the unexpected, and have a greater chance for a successful venture.

Tourism Destination Management – Achieving Sustainable and Competitive Results

This toolkit helps destinations put in place strategies and programs that will best tell their unique story and become an inviting host for visitors no matter the purpose of their journey. More specifically, this toolkit outlines how to build a successful Destination Management Organization (DMO) to increase visitation while preserving a destination’s natural and cultural assets.

Global Tourism – Achieving Sustainable Goals

Sustainable tourism not only promotes economic development, but also environmental and cultural conservation—and therefore employs the concept of a triple bottom line. This toolkit helps to train students, donor agency representatives, and others working in related fields to understand and develop sustainable tourism and further explores the role of tourism in both international development and the global economy.

Scientific, Academic, Volunteer, and Educational Travel – Connecting Responsible Travelers with Sustainable Destinations

This toolkit describes the steps necessary for designing a SAVE travel and tourism development strategy. It provides guidance for the development of a SAVE center—an entity with a mission to enable the destination to create travel and tourism products that service the SAVE travel market and to link those products to their respective markets. Most of all, the toolkit seeks to provide practical tools, including assessment surveys, that can aid in the development process.

Tourism Investment and Finance – Accessing Sustainable Funding and Social Impact Capital

This toolkit provides development practitioners with the information and tools necessary to successfully facilitate the financing of small-scale, sustainable tourism projects, and to transfer these skills to their clients and counterparts. It is designed to assist organizations and individuals working with micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises to conduct pre-feasibility studies, understand the market and financial analysis process, prepare investment briefs, identify potential sources of financing, understand how deals and joint ventures are structured, and work with governments to remove barriers to investment and provide broader access to credit. It also includes lessons learned from past experiences and successful efforts to facilitate sustainable investment and financing.

Tourism Workforce Development

A workforce development system should provide the skills, knowledge, and know-how required by personnel at all levels to deliver quality services to domestic and international visitors. This manual consists of three major components: Introduction to Tourism Workforce Development; use of the “Guide to Assessing and Designing Tourism Workforce Development Programs, which emphasizes job and career opportunities for youth; and case studies focused on implementing tourism-related workforce development programs.

Powering Tourism – Electrification and Efficiency Options for Rural Tourism Facilities

Powering Tourism provides information to help tourism professionals understand and evaluate the range of options for meeting their off-grid energy needs, highlighting efficient and sustainable use of energy. The guide provides a seven-step approach to guide the reader through the process of creating a reliable and affordable energy system by working with staff and visitors, equipment vendors, installers, financial institutions, and energy service providers.

Project Development for Sustainable Tourism – A Step-by-Step Approach

This toolkit introduces the participant to developing a sustainable tourism project that contributes to international development goals. It provides the tools necessary to complete a successful project concept note or similar proposal at the design stage. Readers will also learn approaches to rapidly assess project areas and write project goals, objectives, and activities that embrace the principals of sustainable tourism.

“We rely confidently on Solimar's deep technical experience and professionalism as tourism consultants. You always are exceeding our expectations.”
Leila Calnan, Senior Manager, Tourism Services Cardno Emerging Markets

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