This joint publication between UNWTO and the Organization of American States highlights case studies from across the Americas that showcase the contribution of tourism to sustainable development in line with the 17 universal SDGs. It shows how a common multi-stakeholder approach to tourism development can catalyze sustainable growth through our sector.
• Across the Americas and particularly in the Caribbean, tourism is one of the primary sources of employment, foreign direct investment and GDP.
• Tourism in the Americas also improves livelihoods, promotes poverty alleviation, enhances the protection of biodiversity and cultural heritage development, and helps to build peace.
• It is crucial to precisely define the role tourism should play in the sustainable development agenda of the region up to and beyond 2030.
• Critical attention must be paid to the way tourism is managed, with its income generation and employment benefits at risk of being compromised by tourism 'overcrowding' and climate change.
• The emergence of a more responsible traveller means that destinations in the region should integrate resource efficiency and multi-stakeholder involvement in adopting policies, actions and initiatives.
• Managing tourism development sustainably also requires strengthening partnerships between national and international public and private stakeholders, as well as local communities.
• Destinations can fill their data gap in measuring the social, economic and environmental impacts of tourism, and improve effectiveness of policies and programmes related to the SDGs, through a statistical framework such as is being suggested by the launch of the Measuring Sustainable Tourism (MST) project.