Transforming Tourism Value Chains
Transforming Tourism Value Chains —Project Overview
The project Transforming tourism value chains in developing countries and Small Island Developing States (SIDS)to accelerate more resource efficient, low carbon development, which is a 4 year project that started last June 2017, aims at reducing GHG emissions and improving resource efficiency in key tourism sector value chains with high resource use i.e. accommodation, food & beverage, and meetings, incentives, conferences and events (MICE).
Transforming the sector to low carbon, resource efficient operations, requires an increase in sustainable consumption and production (SCP) practices by businesses and tourists achieved through coherent in- country actions. Activities will focus on countries where tourism plays an outstanding role for the national economy: the Philippines, the Dominican Republic, Mauritius and St. Lucia (the latter in representation of the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States).
The project will help focus countries to:
- Establish and analyze the sector’s inventory of GHG emissions and sustainable products and services in the tourism value chains;
- Establish an integrated emissions reduction and resource efficiency action framework based on life cycle approaches, with specific indicators for mitigation and adaptation priorities;
- Build local institutional and networking capacities;
- Support national implementation and results reporting; and 5) enhance regional tourism networking, lessons and learning.
The 2 Phases of the Project (2017-2018: Assessment Phase)
- Establish and analyse the sector’s inventory of GHG emissions and sustainable products and services in the tourism value chains;
- Establish an integrated emissions reduction and resource efficiency action framework based on life cycle approaches, with specific indicators for mitigation/adaptation priorities
2019-2020: Implementation Phase
- Build local institutional and networking capacities;
- Support national implementation and results reporting and,
- Enhance regional tourism networking, lessons and learning
- Project-specific Objectives
- The private sector’s perspectives, insights, data and key players inform the value chain map, hotspots analysis, and solutions.
- Selected businesses participate in the implementation of project-specific activities, promoted best-practices, and value chain solutions with relation to GHG and RE.
- Tourism value chain businesses in target countries participate and contribute to awareness raising, capacity building and knowledge sharing efforts.
- The private sector in the tourism value chain is a key contributor to the discussions, planning, and policy-making to advance the countries’ towards meeting the NDC targets and the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda in relation to GHG emissions and resource efficiency.
- Selected businesses embrace, replicate, and escalate the solutions and best-practices developed and promoted by the project to decouple GHG emissions and environmental impacts from economic growth.
- The tourism value chain businesses increase their capacity to mitigate GHG emissions and increase resource efficiency based on evidence-based decision making and collective learning.
Workshop 1 (Tourism Value Chain Mapping)
Definition of Tourism Value Chain Map: A tourism value chain is simply defined as a system which describes how private sector firms in collaboration with government and civil society receive or access resources as inputs, add value through various processes (planning, development, financing, marketing, distribution, pricing, positioning, among others) and sell the resulting products to visitors. The value chain describes the full range of activities that are required to facilitate visitor 1
A developing country of 7,107, the Philippines is highly vulnerable to climate changes and natural hazards. The country is now prioritising climate change adaptation and mitigation strategies which include promotion of low-carbon economy. This Launching and Inception Workshop marks the beginning of engaging the key stakeholders of target establishments of hotel and accommodations, and meetings, incentives, conferences, and events or MICE of the German Government supported project, Transforming Tourism Value Chains Developing Countries and Small Island Developing States (SIDS) to Accelerate More Resource Efficient, Low Carbon Development.
A 1-day conference was held to formally present the project, partners, and activities to the project stakeholders. This is also a venue of dialogue for the participants to raise their concern and clarify issues with respect to the implementation and benefits of the project. A workshop was held the next day which aim was to understand the Philippine Tourism (Hotel and MICE sectors) Value Chain and its issues, barriers, and possible solutions to reducing GHG and accelerating resource efficiency.
The project was formally launched by presenting the members of the Philippine Stakeholders Advisory Group (PSTAG) and signing of the Memorandum of Understanding during the first day, 14 June 2017. It was followed by a panel discussion between the panel of experts and the audience on initiatives and
1 Knowledge Applications for Competitive Destinations: A Visitor Experience Value Chain Approach Paper presented by Donald E. Hawkins, Eisenhower Professor of Tourism Policy and Milena Nikolova, Research Assistant, George Washington University School of Business at the WTO Education Council Conference at the XVI General Assembly of the World Tourism Organization, Senegal, December 1, 2005 efforts in sustainable tourism. This was attended by a total of 101 guests (49.5% Male, 50.5% Female) from government agencies, local government units (LGUs), private sector, people organizations, business associations, hotel and accommodation industry, food and beverages, and MICE sectors. The inception workshop was held the next day, 15 June 2017 primary facilitated by WRAP and Local Experts to gain in depth insights on the local scenarios of the target sectors and its value chain. The inception workshop had 47 (42.55% Male, 57.45% Female) participants, further grouped into five sectors: hotel and accommodation, policy, primary stakeholders, food and beverages, and MICE (meetings, incentives, conferences, and events.
Workshop 1 CONCLUSIONS
Key enabling factors to facilitate adaption of sustainable measures include raining awareness, strengthen policy and guidelines, and provide the business model of sustainable development for both businesses and community.
This initiative is both a public and private sector driven. Policy highly influences tourism. It serves as the oversight to the tourism industry. The tourism industry however can both be the beneficiary and victim of this policy. There is a need to review and amend outdated policies and disseminate it to the primary and secondary stakeholders. Policy framework is important to facilitate adoption of environmental aspects such as in regulation, standardization, or incentives. Concurrently, business decisions heavily rely on economic factors. The business sector would need to have a deeper appreciation of sustainability and its benefits to the longevity of their trade.
Awareness was a recurring issue across all sectors. The need to raise the awareness across the board, and coordination was apparent. With the limited knowledge of the target sectors, it is also necessary to engage and collaborate with environmental service and technology providers to assist the establishments to install systems to reduce their environmental impacts.
Workshop 2 (Tourism Value Chain Hotspots Analysis and Solutions)
Definition of Hotspots Analysis: Hotspots analysis (HSA) is defined as a methodological framework that allows for the rapid assimilation and analysis of a range of information sources, including life cycle based studies, market, and scientific research, expert opinion and stakeholder concerns. The outputs from this analysis can then be used to identify potential solutions and prioritize actions around the most significant economic, environmental, ethical and social sustainability impacts or benefits associated with a specific country, city, industry sector, organization, product portfolio, product category or individual product or service. Hotspots analysis is often used as a pre- cursor to developing more detailed or granular sustainability information (Barthel et al . 2014 ) 2 Basically, for this project, Hotspots Analysis will be able to pinpoint where in the Tourism Value Chain has Sustainability issues. Sustainability issues can come from establishment operations and it’s Tourism Value Chain.
2 Barthel M, Fava J, Harnanan C, Valdivia S, Khan S, James K, Smerek A (2014) Hotspots Analysis: mapping of existing methodologies, tools and guidance and initial recommendations for the development of global guidance. UNEP/SETAC Life Cycle Initiative-Flagship Project 3a (Phase 1) v.5.2. UNEP/SETAC Life Cycle Initiative website. http://lifecycleinitiative.org/ wp- content/uploads/2014/10/Flagship3a-Hotspots- Mapping.pdf
The 2nd workshop featured presentations and a panel discussion circumscribing on best practices for sustainable tourism. This was complemented by the three interactive sessions where it aggregated the solutions collected from the stakeholders. Methodology used for the three sessions entailed a participatory engagement well within the project’s praxis. Diversity of 50 stakeholders (66% Female, 34% Male) was also apparent, some coming from civil societies, private sector, policy makers, government and academe where it all added to the richness of the discussion.
The presentations addressed the need for a low carbon development citing actual cases like in France where simple changes were made such as changing color preference of linens. Points were also raised to justify that high carbon is proportion to high business cost. Moreover, the panel discussion deepened the discourse by citing local examples such as that of a resort in Palawan where it banked on community development to foster environmentalism. Projects by civil societies that have similar aspects or intentions were also presented. This highlights the need to harmonize allied initiatives to maximize the goal of the project.
Workshops were segmented into three interactive sessions. The 1st session aimed to validate the hotspots identified within the tourism value chain and the possible barriers. Some prominent issues that had arose during the discussion were the lack of standards on some products, proliferation of imported products in the market, and the capacity of the government to influence necessary stakeholders and implement policies. On the other hand, the 2nd and 3rd sessions were interconnected activities. Long list of solutions were extracted from the 2nd interactive session through carousel method. There were 4 four themes discussed: Energy, Food, Procurement, and Waste Management. Themes were further contextualized into Management, Technology, Law and Financial for a more detailed discussion. The 3rd session discussed the shortlist solutions that were culled from the long-list solutions. Such solutions were scrutinized to scale the priority on pre-identified considerations (Cost, Timescale, Group or Individual Action, and Pros and Cons). All short-listed solutions featured an IEC campaign or training. Other pattern observed was the high appropriation for group initiative rather than individual action.
Workshop 2 NEXT STEPS
Keith of WRAP stated that what is next for the project is to develop a long list of actions, understanding the different impacts of the solutions, and provide proper costing for each. Next workshop will present a more detailed short list of solutions where actions with the most benefits will be chosen.
Helena of UN Environment began the closing remarks by appreciating the participation of the audience. She didn’t want them leaving with the impression that engagement only happens at workshops and not in their day to day operations. What will be developed in the next phase of the project would be training or technical assistance of tourism value chain business practices delivered by PCEPSDI in partnership with initiatives from WWF-PH and Zero Carbon Resorts. The idea is to bring initiatives together into capacity building sessions for a more cohesive action on SCP driven by the long list of actions provided today and what will be added in the future by the PSTAG. What is part of the capacity building is technical assistance from the project partners on what is more sustainable and viable.
Though there is still a lot of work to do, the Philippines has the good grounds in terms of policies to advance quickly. Many acts and ordinances were presented that provide the enabling environment that is required for the transformation of the tourism sector.
USec. Rolando of Department of Tourism closed the workshop by appreciating the participation and valuable inputs of the audience and highlighted his feeling that there are more ideas the Filipinos are enthusiastic to share moving forward. He hopes everyone can participate again in the next workshop April or May of 2018.
Ms. Helena Rey De Asis, Programme Officer
Ms. Maureen Grace Lebria, Programme Director
Mr. Kiko Velhagen, Project Officer