Effective governance is a key condition for the sustainable development of tourism destinations. It´s efficiency largely depends on inter-relationships between relevant actors in the sector, who through participatory processes are connected in the making of policies and decisions. For an evidence-based or evidence-informed decision-making process, the collection of data, deriving, inter alia, from sustainable tourism indicators, their transformation into subsequent information and knowledge, is crucial and shall help to improve tourism sustainability and competitiveness in a destination. 

However, the process of informing policy decisions is highly complex. It depends on various factors, ranging from the capacity to understand what the newly generated information means for the destination, to political, cultural, financial and other considerations that are influencing such.  

For the establishment of Observatories in general and for INSTO Observatories in particular, the participatory process is considered fundamental. The Rules for the Operation and Management of the UNWTO INSTO Observatories clearly outline the need to engage all relevant stakeholders through a participatory approach and involve them in the processes and decisions ensuring coherent action regarding, inter alia, the monitored issue areas as well as the selection of indicators and methodologies.  


Indicator Development Procedures, Excerpt from Indicators of Sustainable Development of Tourism Destinations, A Guidebook, World Tourism Organization (2004), pp. 21–54.
Implementation and Management, Guide for Local Authorities on Developing Sustainable Tourism, World Tourism Organization (1998), pp. 53–54.  .
Local Prosperity, Local Control, Community Wellbeing, Making Tourism more Sustainable, A Guide for Policy Makers, World Tourism Organization (2005), pp. 28–29 and pp. 34–38. 
Management Strategies, ‘Overtourism’? – Understanding and Managing Urban Tourism Growth beyond Perceptions, World Tourism Organization; Centre of Expertise Leisure, Tourism & Hospitality; NHTV Breda University of Applied Sciences; and NHL Stenden University of Applied Sciences (eds., 2018), pp. 27–43. 
Section A: Sustainable Management, GSTC Destination Criteria, Version 2.0, Global Sustainable Tourism Council (2019), pp. 4–7.  
Form a stakeholder working group, The European Tourism Indicator System, ETIS Toolkit for Sustainable Destination Management, European Commission (2016), pp. 13–16. 
The Indicators, Indicators for Measuring Competitiveness in Tourism: A Guidance Document, OECD Tourism Papers, No. 2013/02, pp. 17, 38 and 50.  


Sustainable Tourism Observatory of South Tyrol: The Changing Role of Destination Management Organizations, Presentation at the 2022 INSTO Workshop in Mallorca, by Sustainable Tourism Observatory of South Tyrol (04/2022) Video
Excellence Initiative of Sustainable Destinations Germany: How to Measure “Success”? Developing Sustainability KPI for German Tourism Destinations, Presentation at the 2022 INSTO Workshop in Mallorca, by the Excellence Initiative of Sustainable Destinations Germany (04/2022) Video
ISO37000: Governing Organizations for Long-Term Wellbeing of All People and Planet, Presentation at the INSTO Global Meeting, by Cambridge Institute for Sustainable Leadership (11/2021). PPT  Video
Maximising the influence of Sustainable Tourism Indicators towards Systemic Change, Presentation at the INSTO Global Meeting, by University of Surrey (11/2021). PPT  Video
Smart Talk: Smart Destination Governance, Discussion at the Second UNWTO Conference on Smart Destinations (06/2018). Video



Time for DMOcracy, Group NAO.
Measuring the Sustainability of Tourism (MST), UNWTO
System of Environmental Economic Accounting (SEEA), United Nations