The observatory will officially be added to the network at the FITUR tourism fair in Madrid this Thursday (January 23).
In a statement to the press, Algarve tourism boss João Fernandes says that having the observatory join the network will make it “even easier to exchange information with partners, implement similar management and monitoring techniques and increase the Algarve’s tourism competitiveness”.
Fernandes believes that the sustainability of the region is linked to the way it manages its natural resources and how it takes on board the interests of future generations.
“This regional observatory guides us in the right direction by developing sustainable tourism methods and providing us with scientific knowledge about the region,” he adds.
The Algarve’s bid to have its observatory join the INSTO was led by the regional tourism board (RTA) with the support of Turismo de Portugal, the regional development and coordination commission (CCDR Algarve) and the University of the Algarve (Ualg).
According to its website, INSTO was created in 2004 with the main objective being “to support the continuous improvement of sustainability and resilience in the tourism sector through systematic, timely and regular monitoring of tourism performance and impact”.
Another goal was to “connect dedicated destinations in order to better understand destination-wide resource use and foster the responsible management of tourism”.
“Through the systematic application of monitoring, evaluation and information management techniques, the initiative provides policy makers, planners, tourism managers and other relevant stakeholders with key tools to strengthen institutional capacities to support the formulation and implementation of sustainable tourism policies, strategies, plans and management processes,” the website adds.