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Event Details

ITB Responsible Destination Day



March 4, 2020

10:45 - 17:45

CityCube Berlin, Hall A1

Strategies and best practice examples of key tourism regions, recommendations for optimized destination management.

Hosted by:

Dr. David Ermen, Managing Director, Destination Capacity


10:45 - 11:00

Dr. David Ermen, Managing Director, Destination Capacity

  • Exclusively at ITB: the new OECD report "Tourism Trends and Policies 2020"
  • Costs and benefits of tourism for destinations. 
  • Implications of sustainable tourism growth. 
  • Valuable insights into international best practice examples. 
  • How to spread the benefits of tourism more efficiently, enhance connectivity, mainstream sustainable policies and practices, leverage technology as a tool for destination management, and better measure the territorial dimension of tourism.
  • On the panel: tour operators from key source markets, rural and urban tourism destinations in Europe and Asia.

Introductory presentation:
Alain Dupeyras, Head of Regional Development and Tourism Division, OECD

Moderated by:
Dr. David Ermen, Managing Director, Destination Capacity

Panel guests:
Alain Dupeyras, Head of Regional Development and Tourism Division, OECD
Jerry Inzerillo, CEO, Diriyah Gate Development Authority
Ingo Lies, Founder & Managing Director, Chamäleon Reisen
Keith Tan, CEO, Singapore Tourism Board

-In Cooperation with UNWTO-

  • According to the UNWTO/ITF report on “Transport-related CO2 emissions of the tourism sector – Modelling Results”, under the current ambition scenario, a total of 1,998 million tonnes of transport-related CO2 will be attributable to tourism by 2030, representing an increase of 25% over 2016.
  • The discussion of this high-level panel will build on the commitment of the tourism sector to advance towards a climate high ambition scenario in line with the goals of the Paris Agreement, as expressed during the COP25 official side-event “Transforming Tourism for Climate Action”.
  • Policy makers, destinations and industry leaders will explain their leading commitments to transform tourism and aim to support a “high ambition scenario” of climate action in tourism.

Zurab Pololikashvili, Secretary-General, UNWTO

Moderated by:
Dr. Dirk Glaesser, Director Sustainable Development of Tourism, World Tourism Organization (UNWTO)

Panel guests:
Felix Eichhorn, President, Aida Cruises Ltd.
Alba Lajusticia, Director, Tourism Observatory of Barcelona
Glenn Mandziuk, President & CEO, Thomson Okanagan Tourism Region, British Columbia, Canada
Young Tae Kim, Secretary-General, International Transport Forum

  • Expedition cruises: a fast and rapidly growing market segment. 
  • Uniqueness, authenticity and luxury on board of small high-tech ships at an ultra-exclusive level of comfort in remote regions of the world.
  • What are the operational and logistical challenges in remote regions of the world? 
  • How do shipping companies deal with the ecological challenges? 
  • How can expedition cruises be made environmentally friendly and how can luxury and sustainability be reconciled? 
  • Above all, will the announced armada of new ships lead to overtourism in the Arctic and Antarctic as well?

Moderated by:
Thomas P. Illes, Owner & CEO, thilles consulting GmbH, Cruise Analyst, University Lecturer and Journalist

Panel guests:
Ove Dimmen, Sales Manager, Ulstein Verft
Nicolas Dubreuil, Polar & Tropical Expedition Expert, Director of Sustainability & Expedition Cruises, Ponant
Mike Louagie, Freelance Cruise & Ferry Photographer/Writer/Consultant
Robin West, Vice President of Expedition Operations & Planning, Seabourn

-In Cooperation with ARGE Latin America-

  • Long-haul flights: the opposite of sustainable?
  • But many tourism destinations can only be reached by long-haul flights. 
  • Is it still possible to travel to long-haul destinations with a clear conscience? 
  • How can the efforts of tourism companies, international conservation organisations and sustainable countries be promoted actively by responsible tourism? 
  • CO2 emissions trading and compensation as a solution?
  • Will the world´s best sustainable destinations soon be left behind by tourism? 

Moderated by:
Andreas M. Gross, First Chairman, ARGE Lateinamerika

Panel guests:
Milly Alva Haimberger, Global Director of Sales, Aqua Expeditions
Dr. Frano Ilic, Public Relations Officer, Studiosus Reisen
Celia Muñoz, Sales Director EMEA, USA and Asia, Iberia
Hon. Maria Amalia Revelo Raventós, Minister of Tourism, Costa Rica
Stefan Schmidt, Member of the German Bundestag, Alliance 90/The Greens

  • How to create a competitive advantage for attractive and livable urban destinations
  • The disruptive power of mobile applications, technology, big data, augmented reality and new social media bears a lot of chances for destinations and tour operators to create a new visitor experience.
  • Becoming a smart urban destination requires a well thought and integrated approach.
  • The World Tourism Cities Federation (WTCF) has just recently released the “Global Report on Smart Tourism in Cities” sharing the results of a comprehensive research on smart tourism in urban destinations.
  • This panel aims at providing a platform for learning about the outcome and conclusions made in the WTCF research.
  • At the same time, it intends to give all stakeholders a stage to share their experiences in implementing smart initiatives and use technology as a tool to create extraordinary experiences and enable visitors to better enjoy their stay in a destination.

Introductory presentation:
Esencan Terzibasoglu, Special Advisor to the Secretary General, WTCF, former Director of Destination Management and Quality Programme, UNWTO

Moderated by:
Sascha Stange, Deputy Director of the Liaison Department, World Tourism Cities Federation WTCF

Panel guests:
Dr. Joan Borràs, ICT & Tourism Project Manager, Department of Tourism Innovation, Eurecat - the Technological Centre of Catalonia
Oded Grofman, CEO, Tel Aviv Hotel Association
Markus Kuhlo, Director of Marketing and Strategy, Tencent Cloud Europe
Helena Lindqvist, Project Manager for European Capital of Smart Tourism 2020, Gothenburg & Co


-in Cooperation with the Global Travel and Tourism Resilience Council-

  • Overview of resilience and how it is incorporated in crisis management planning
  • The latest update on coronavirus, what is known and what is being done
  • Sustainability: how to identify risks and planning for them
  • How to use data to ensure sustainable resilience
  • Examples of sustainable resiliency highlighting key actions

Moderated by:
Anita Mendiratta, Founder & President, Anita Mendiratta & Associates

Panel guests:
Dr. Caroline Brown, European Regional Program Director, WHO
Carlos Cendra, Chief Marketing Officer, Mabrian Technologies
Scott Hume, Vice President, Operations, Global Rescue
Jeffrey Rutledge, President & CEO, AIG Travel
Professor Lloyd Waller, Executive Director, Global Travel Resilience and Crisis Management Centre

-In Cooperation with MC Group- 

  • Neglecting sustainability destroys the environment and culture, the local population revolts and tourists become discouraged.
  • Sustainability: the most important principle of destination planning.
  • Today: considerable differences in sustainability efforts.
  • Best practice countries explain their formulas for success.
  • Which policy measures can be used to achieve progress in sustainability and which measures are unsuccessful?
  • What economic successes do sustainability advances bring? What are the most difficult hurdles?

Moderated by:
Sasha Vakulina, Business Editor, Euronews

Panel guests:
H.E. Khalid Jassim Al Midfa, Chairman, Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority (SCTDA)
Hon. Didier Dogley, Minister of Tourism, Civil Aviation, Ports & Marine, Seychelles
Dr. Dirk Glaesser, Director Sustainable Development of Tourism, World Tourism Organization (UNWTO)
Hon. Þórdís Kolbrún R. Gylfadóttir, Minister of Tourism, Industry and Innovation, Iceland
Hon. Mmamoloko Nkhensani Kubayi-Ngubane, Minister of Tourism, South Africa
Hon. Prahlad Singh Patel, Minister of State for Tourism, India
Hon. Savvas Perdios, Minister of Tourism, Cyprus
Hon. Maria Amalia Revelo Raventós, Minister of Tourism, Costa Rica
H.E. Ahmad bin Aqil al-Khatib, Chairman of the Board of Directors, Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage