Leading the Transformation

Sustainable Destinations Summit

Sustainable Destinations Summit

7-8 April 2022 | Palacio de Congresos de Mallorca

Mallorca Illes Balears
Fundació Mallorca Turisme

Mallorca hosted the "Sustainable Destinations Summit. Leading the Transformation”, organized by the Mallorca Turisme Foundation in coordination with the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), on April 7 and 8 at the Palau de Congressos de Palma.

The island was, for two days, the international benchmark in terms of sustainability and tourism, since the call has an international character. Its main objective was to favor an environment of exchange and learning, as well as to promote knowledge of the best practices of environmental, social and economic sustainability that are developed in the world.

DAY 1: part 1


Ms. Isabel Oliver Sagreras, Office of the UNWTO Secretary- General, World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), Spain
Mr. José Hila Vargas, Major of Palma, Spain
Ms. Catalina Cladera i Crespí, President of the Consell Mallorc, Spain

KEYNOTE: Mallorca, leading the transition to regenerative tourism

Sr. Andreu Serra, Minister of Mallorca Insular Council, Spain

SESSION 1: What about water? Water management in touism - challenges and innovative solution

Water management is highly relevant for any sustainable tourism strategy. Destinations like Mallorca are highly dependent on water resources due to their insularity, their strong dependence of the economic and social fabric of tourism, their sensitivity to climate change with fast warming rates and high drought intensity. A knowledge and science-based approach is essential to guarantee real preservation and restoration of the island’s’ environment in line with international sustainability science principles.

Water management is of key importance for tourism as services are highly dependent on it. What is being done to help alleviate the problem at a government level? And what can we do to help take the strain off the system and become more responsible citizens?

This session analysed water management from different points of view: the sea, water management and sewage and discuss best practices and innovative solutions for efficient water and wastewater management, as well as water quality.

Dr. Bartolomé Deyà Tortella, Vice-Dean of the Faculty of Tourism of the UIB, Spain

Closing the water cycle. Reuse
Mr. Miquel Mir Gual, Minister of Environment and Territory of the Balearic Islands, Spain

The role of the tourism sector in marine conservation
Mr. Aniol Esteban, Director, Foundation Marilles, Spain

Sustainable water management in tourism: the case of Valencia
Mr. Jaume Mata, Head of Sustainable Tourism, Visit Valencia, Spain

Sustainable Water Resources Management in Maldives Tourism
Sr. Asad Riza, Deputy Minister, Ministry of Tourism, Maldives

Tourism and the water challenge
Prof. Stefan Gössling, Professor of the School of Business and Economics, Linnaeus University, Sweden

DAY 1 - part 2

SESSION 2: What to do with all the waste? Waste Management and tourism, a solid commitment

Solid waste management is an important aspect in the sustainable development of tourism in a destination. A proper waste management model allows to reach the strategic goal of zero waste, on the basis that all urban and assimilated waste delivered to the system, are valued material or energy. It is, without doubt, a project environmentally advanced, economically viable and socially accepted.

This session analysed waste management from different points of view: control and storage, collection and transport, processing and disposal.

Mr. Antoni Munar, Senior Consultant, Turismoconsulting, Spain

Iberostar: zero waste to landfill target by 2025
Ms. Sandra Benbeniste Millán, Sustainability Director EMEA, Iberostar Hotels, Spain

Beyond Business as Usual: Solutions to the Dueling Threats of Climate Change and Plastic Waste
Ms. Nina Bellucci Butler, CEO Stina, USA
Mr. Andy Schroeder, Cofounder Ocean Plastics Recovery Project, USA

Smart waste management in the city of Benidorm
Dr. Antonio Pérez Pérez, Mayor of Benidorm, Spain

Digitization as a driver of change in the field of sustainability and waste management.
Mr. Miguel González San Roman, Director, Business Development, Minsait/Indra, Spain

DAY 1 - part 3

SESSION 3: Are we circular? Circular economy principles to guide a more sustainable and resilient tourism development

Circular economy is an important way forward because it allows the tourism sector’s stakeholders to simultaneously activate drivers of efficiency, innovation, and sustainability, essential to boost a greater tourism value. Circularity is a necessity for both the economy and society.  The tourism industry is deeply interlinked with and dependent on multiple key resource flows, asset and commodity value chains in society – from agriculture to food, to the built environment and transport industries to name a few. Travel and tourism actors can act as powerful enablers of circularity and benefit from shared circular value creation and value capture within relevant value chains.

This session analysed circularity from different points of view: nature regeneration, the European Circular Economy Action Plan, and the most outstanding projects.

Mr. Jose María de Juan, CEO Koan Consulting, Spain

Application of the circular economy to tourism
Mr. Enrique Martínez, President of Segittur, Spain

Circular economy or how to make the leap to regenerative tourism
Dr. Antoni Riera, Director of the Impulsa Balears Foundation and Professor of Environmental Economics at the UIB, Spain 

Circular economy by Garden Hotels
Mr. Jaume Ordinas, Controller Garden Hotels, Spain  

Circular Economy; Green Transformation of Tourism Industry and Destinations
Ph.D Elif Balcı Fisunoğlu, Vice-General Manager of Tourism Operations and Development division in Türkiye Tourism Promotion and Development Agency, Turkey

SESSION 4: How to measure sustainability? The only way to increase sustainability is the one based on evidence

The development of sustainable destinations implies a process in which a territory and its host community generate and reinforce its economic, social, and cultural dynamics to allow the different components of tourism and their availability to the market to develop in a smart and responsible way. This also means to lead a strategy to include measurable, feasible and ambitious objectives on sustainability issues and to follow the framework of global criteria and objectives established in the United Nations sustainable development agenda.

This session discussed monitoring sustainability from different points of view: initiatives for the measurement of sustainable tourism, data analysis for decision-making and leading strategies based on real information and experiences of Tourism Observatories.

Ms. Dolores Ordóñez, Technical Director of AnySolution, Spain

The role of evidence in the sustainable development of tourism
Dr. Dirk Glaesser, Director Sustainable Development of Tourism Department, UNWTO

Measuring sustainability in Smart Tourist Destinations
Mr. Luis Javier Gadea , Manager Director of Tourism Research, Development and Innovation, Segittur, Spain

New data sources for smart tourism
Dr. Jose Javier Ramasco, CSIC Researcher at IFISC (CSIC-UIB), Spain

Data as Enabler of Sustainable Tourism Strategies
Dr. Sérgio Guerreiro, Senior Director, Knowledge Management & Innovation, Turismo de Portugal

Big data to measure the sustainability of tourist destinations
Mr. Carlos Cendra, Partner and Marketing, Sales and Communication Director at Mabrian Technologies, Spain

DAY 2 - Part 1

KEYNOTE: Social circularity and other axes of the Balearic tourism model

Mr. Iago Negueruela, Minister of Economic Model Tourism and Work Territory of the Balearic Islands, Spain

SESSION 5: The people are key

In tourism, the economics of human capital are associated with the value that people bring to a destination’s quality of service. Arguably, competent, friendly, and helpful people have a far greater impact on guest satisfaction at a destination than does extravagant infrastructure. Therefore, both tourism companies and destinations need to approach the development of their people with the same fervour they do the construction of hotels and attractions.

This session analysed human capital from different points of views: the meaning of Sustainable Human Capital, how to improve Human Resources Capital, and how to ensure a fair Human Resources management.

Mr. Jimmy Pons, Innovation maker, Roundcubers.com, Spain

Riu Hotels method from local realities to social investment
Ms. Catalina Alemany, Manager, Corporate Social Responsibility, Riu Hotels, Spain
Prof. Lola Herrero, Associate Professor, Scientific Director, Jean-Baptiste Say Institute ESCP Europe, Spain

People make the future present
Mr. José Mañas, CEO and cofounder, Wireless DNA, Spain

Sustainable Tourism in Monaco, engaging people for a better future
Ms. Estelle Antognelli, Manager, Responsible Tourism, Tourism and Congress Directorate, Tourist and Convention Authority, Monaco

The change of culture, key vault in the process towards sustainability
Dr. Manuel Butler, Director of the OET in London, UK

Involving people in destination’s sustainable transformation
Mr. Juanma Martínez, Project Manager, Green & Human, Spain

THE WAY FORWARD: How destinations can lead the transformation (part 1)

The development of initiatives that lead to the consolidation of sustainable destinations requires a common agenda and the coordination of strategies among all the actors that make up the international tourism value chain. Faced with an increasingly demanding and responsible tourist, destinations face great challenges that, in turn, entail valuable opportunities to consolidate an industry capable of promoting a fairer and more prosperous community, as well as ensuring the satisfaction of visitors with a sustainable, safe and quality experience.

This Session contributed to consolidate those points that have been discussed over the past two days and will contribute to the generation of new synergies for a social, economic and environmentally responsible tourism.

Mr. Michael Collins, Founder, Managing Director, TravelMedia.ie, UK

Mr. Mark Tanzer, Chief Executive, ABTA, UK
Mr. Norbert Fiebig, President, German Travel Association (DRV), Germany
Ms. María Frontera, President of the FEHM, Spain
Mr. Miguel Sanz, General Manager, Tourspain, Spain
Sr. Andreu Serra, Minister of Mallorca Insular Council, Spain

DAY 2 - Part 2

THE WAY FORWARD: How destinations can lead the transformation (part 2)


Ms. Isabel Oliver Sagreras, Office of the UNWTO Secretary- General, UNWTO, Spain
Ms. Nadia Calviño Santamaría, First Vice President and Minister for the Economy and Digital Transformation, Spain
Ms. Francina Armengol Socias, President of Territory of the Balearic Islands, Spain


Sustainable Destinations Summit Official Page

Sustainable Destinations Summit Leading the Transformation Mallorca Turisme Foundation
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