A methodology to truly rethink cultural tourism in Europe and beyond

Published on 28 Sep 2023

The recent paper by Ottaviani et al., based on TExTOUR data and experience, shows a possible way to achieve sustainable cultural tourism development in remote areas.

TExTOUR is a European project aiming to rethink cultural tourism in Europe and beyond. It may seem an ambitious claim, however, the project is going in the right direction.

In their recently published article, Ottaviani et al. start from the experience of TExTOUR eight pilots, and data collected during the project, to find out how methods and tools from participatory heritage-based tourism should be adapted to support inclusive and sustainable development in remote and peripheral areas.

The key is to understand that participatory processes are necessary, but they are not enough if they do not include all the four pillars of sustainable development: economic, cultural, environmental, and social sustainability. However, there was a critical lack of a comprehensive methodology addressing all the aspects of sustainable planning at each stage of the process through inclusive and diverse participation of local communities.

To fill this gap, Ottaviani et al. described a new methodology and a series of tools based on three activities designed for the participatory workshops: the co-mapping exercise, the Action Co-Creation, and a Business Model Canvas adapted to the specific needs of sustainable cultural tourism.

The innovative potential of the methodology described by Ottaviani et al. is fully explained in the article “When Cultural Tourism and sustainable development go hand in hand” on CORDIS.

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