Published: 21 March 2023

Sharing best practice of gender-transformative tourism policies

The World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) recently released a report titled Snapshot of Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment in National Tourism Strategies which provides a synthesis of publicly-available strategies from 70 countries.

UNWTO commissioned the University of Surrey’s Gender, Entrepreneurship and Social Policy Institute (GESPi) to carry out a desk-based study as part of the UNWTO’s Centre Stage Project to explore how gender issues and women’s empowerment are integrated into national tourism policies and strategies, an issue that has become increasingly important as the world recovers from the Covid-19 pandemic and cost of living crisis. It was funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Development and Cooperation (Bundesministerium für wirtschaftliche Zusammenarbeit – BMZ), Deutsche Gesellschaft für internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH [German Agency for International Cooperation and Development] and UN Women.

The report offers recommendations to policy-makers for achieving gender-transformative tourism policies. Report lead, Dr Albert Kimbu, explains: “by reviewing those 70 countries which have national tourism policies or strategies which are publicly available online, we were able to identify good practice and gender transformative policies in only a handful of them. Governments ergo need to move away from designing strategies that are simply gender aware and responsive to co-creating and implementing inclusive policies/strategies that are transformative and mainstream gender in partnership with (inter)national organisations and other key stakeholders."

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