The 13th of May Greening the Islands held a webinar to launch the 7th edition of the GTI Awards, the internationally recognized contest that gathers good practices and innovations on islands to give them public visibility globally and foster their replication. In fact, allowing good practices to be replicated on islands and remote locations is crucial to avoid common mistakes and accelerate their sustainable transition and is at the heart of the GTI Observatory’s activity.
During the webinar, some of the past GTI Awards winners offered an update on the progress made with their projects as well as evidence of replicability and the activities carried out for their dissemination: Barbados, Cape Verde, Seychelles, Sint Maarten, Chumbe Island (Tanzania), Madeira, Gran Canaria, Malta, Elba, Crete and Cyprus. Representatives of the 2021 GTI Jury participated to comment on the progress made for the sustainability of islands and discuss the importance of replicating good practices on innovative solutions: UNESCO WWAP, European Commission, OCTA, Observatory of Tourism for Island Economies (OTIE), Insuleur, and University of Toronto.
The GTI Awards will recognize the best projects on energy, water, mobility, waste, agriculture, sustainable tourism. Furthermore, a new category “governance & inclusion” has been added for the 7th edition of the contest, to capture policies’ socioeconomic and livelihood effects, their real impacts for people. One of the objectives of the GTI Awards is to identify and promote the most deserving sustainable island destination, advocating new models of sustainable tourism.
In occasion of the launch event of the GTI Awards 2021, Greening the Islands and Green Destinations announced a new multi-feature partnership with the objective of supporting islands as sustainable tourism destinations. As a mutual engagement, Green Destinations joins the GTI Observatory Sustainable Tourism Working Group and GTI joins the International Jury of the GD Awards (Islands & Seaside category).
“Beyond improving the quality of life and air of the islanders, the sustainable transition of islands has a direct effect on the economy and employment, with particular reference to tourism”, said Gianni Chianetta, GTI’s Founder and Director. “As GTI, we believe this partnership is strategic because it helps us reinforce our action for the islands, that we already support through the Observatory and Index, by allowing them to also be certified as sustainable destinations.”
“Islands have always been very important for us because of the authenticity of island tourism and the usual absence of mass tourism” said Albert Salman, founder and president of Green Destinations. “It is therefore a great pleasure to cooperate with GTI. By combining our approaches we can better support islands towards in a sustainable future. This also includes the exchange of good practices and the promotion of sustainable island tourism.”
The program includes benefits for the winners of the GTI Awards as well as for all participant islands: GTI Awards winners (7 islands) will be rewarded with a fast-track to the GD Top 100 Destination Sustainability Stories competition, while special conditions will apply to other participants. GTI will also launch the Top 10 Sustainable Tourism Island Destinations in cooperation with GD at the GTI e_Convention 2021 (19-20-21 October) and the results will be presented at the GTI e_Convention 2022.
Candidacies for the GTI Awards 2021 are open until October 1st, 2021. See the contest regulation at this link and submit your island good practice. Winners will be presented at the GTI e_Convention 2021.