Promoting Sustainable Tourism in ASEAN World Heritage Sites with Visitor Management Assessment
Project Title: Promoting Sustainable Tourism in ASEAN World Heritage Sites with Visitor Management Assessment
Brief project description
World Heritage has high potential to drive community development especially around sustainable tourism and creative economies. In the ASEAN countries, World Heritage sites have increasingly become key tourism destinations. While admittedly tourism brings a lot of potential benefits, sustainable planning and management of tourism is one of the most pressing challenges concerning the future of the World Heritage sites.
At the latest 2019 ASEAN Tourism Ministerial Forum, ASEAN Member States jointly stated their determination in “Connecting heritages for ASEAN tourism development in digital age” and reiterate the common needs in strengthen the national and local capacity in visitor management to ensure the sustainable tourism development. It is also acknowledged that joint efforts will be needed to identify collective and innovative solutions to address the issues that are currently faced in managing tourism across the sites. In order to achieve this commitment, addressing the challenges currently faced at the World Heritage sites in ASEAN countries will be key as it will at the same time ensure that tourism is effectively and sustainably managed, and to protect the heritage values of the sites. The ultimate goal of the proposed project is to help site management authority in ASEAN countries to improve tourism management so as to protect the heritage values of the sites and maximize their contribution to sustainable development objectives.
The project will involve selected World Cultural Heritage Sites in the ASEAN countries (except Brunei Darussalam because there is currently no World Heritage site in this country). In average 2 sites from each country will be selected. The proposed project will apply the “learning-by-doing” approach which combines a series of annual workshops and on-site implementation and practices in between the workshops.
The project will be implemented by Thailand Designated Areas for Sustainable Tourism Administration (DASTA), Thailand Ministry of Tourism and Sports, and United Nations Education Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).
1. To better understand the current state of tourism management in ASEAN World Heritage Sites.
2. To be able to further identify and implement solutions to address issues that are currently faced by ASEAN World Heritage Sites.
3. To collect good practices in tourism management in ASEAN World Heritage Sites for further dissemination and replication.
A comprehensive assessment of ASEAN World Heritage sites
1. Training workshop on the use of Visitor Management Assessment and Strategies Tool (VMAST) developed by UNESCO
2. Carrying out an assessment using the VMAST with technical assistance from UNESCO