Presentation of this communication activity of the project by Ms. María de la Concepción de Santa Ana Fernández (third on the left), Managing-Director of El legado andalusí Andalusian Public Foundation; Ms. María Angustias García Valdecasas (company representative of  Cicerone); Ms. María Teresa Hontoria (company representative of  Granada Singular); Ms. Juana Biedma (company representative of  Visit art); Ms. Elisa Linares (company representative of  Guías de Arte) and Ms. Palmira López de Hierro (director of the Cultural Tourism Department of El legado andalusí), in the historical building named Corral del Carbón (Granada, Spain), the headquarters of this Foundation. This event is involving companies, stakeholders and general public.
PRESENTATION OF  WALKS IN GRANADA

Andalusian Public Foundation El legado andalusí (Andalusia, Spain) is the Leader Partner of BEST MED Project and has organised  Walks in Granada within the framework of this project  Beyond European Sustainable Tourism MED Path. This activity, which aims to highlight sustainable cultural tourism in the local area, seeks to provide an experience in the creation of a model of governance in the Mediterranean in cultural sustainable tourism in line with this project.
Given the current health measures due to the COVID-19 crisis, the Foundation organised this event in the open air, bringing this action closer to a larger number of target audiences. It includes a serie of walks through historic and monumental Granada and began the last month of June with an approach alligned with the project's objectives. A representative group of local public and regional public authorities together with regional and local tourism companies attended the presentation of this activity. In the words of Ms. María de la Concepción de Santa Ana Fernández:  "Walks in Granada is a compromise with sustainable tourism in times of covid and with quality tourism; at the same time, is an opportunity to show the cultural richness of a city like Granada. it is also a commitment to tourism of proximity -continued-, a segment to be valued in the maintenance of the local economy in the current situation".
BUILDING COMMON HORIZONS
Kick off Meeting of the renewed MED Tourism Sustainable Community in Salou (Spain)
(3rd-4th March)
The renewed MED Sustainable Tourism Community met in Salou (Spain) last 3rd and 4th March. This meeting allowed participants to address the following issues: to welcome new  projects to the Community and to start building connections with closed projects through community-building activities, to identify trasferring practices put in place by Modular Projects (MPs) to feed the discussions at MED Programme level, to get knowledge about the capitalisation action plan of the Community and to engage the Modular
Projects (MP's) in the mainstreaming activities that will be carried out in the coming months. 
The event was addressed to the representatives of Modular Projects, PANORAMED and Strategic Projects, associated partners of the MED Sustainable Tourism Community and local and regional stakeholders. BEST MED attended the meeting where the general lines of action of the project were presented. In this sense, the partner in charge of WP6 ( Capitalising) -Conference of Peripheral Maritime Regions of Europe (CPMR)-, participated in those days representing BEST MED and introducing its main tasks with a speech by Ms. Claudia Guzzon.
Created in November 2016 within the framework of the Interreg MED Programme, the MED Sustainable Tourism Community was renewed in October 2019 for a three-year period until 2022 to make tourism a real driver for inclusive and sustainable growth.
SMART WORKING
2nd SCM of Best Med Project (3rd-4th, June)

Due to health crisis all over Europe, the 2nd SCM of the project had to be carried out on line last 3rd-4th of June. Despite the situation caused by the pandemic, the project tried to maintain the foreseen activities in the Application Form whenever possible. This has allowed the partners to present during this meeting the work in which they have been involved in the previous months. In this sense, the Lead Partner (LP) -El legado andalusí Andalusian Public Foundation- opened the SCM by providing a general overview of ongoing activities that were progressing.This 2nd SCM was also attended by Ms. Francesca Marcato, Project Officer of the JS for BEST MED project, who illustrated to the partners the special conditions and flexibility rules currently applied to the projects to deal with this particular emergency situation. She also informed that the Interreg MED Programme is fully aware of this situation and is committed to find the best solutions for all the projects. Partners will be able to make modifications linked to COVID-19 restrictions. 
Following this introduction, the LP -in charge of the WP2 devoted to Communication- presented the BEST MED official website to the partnership. This activity is an important milestone within the communication framework of the project and will allow to disseminate the main contents planned for the duration of the project. It has got also easy access to the deliverables as they are made by the partners. After the 1st SCM, two social media accounts -Linkedin and Twitter- have been created which has made possible to give greater visibility to the actions carried out during this period. The LP put a special emphasis on the importance of the project social networks taking into account the impossibility of carrying out a face-to-face agenda in the upcoming months. To conclude the presentation of the activities related to this WP, the Communication Officer underlined relevance of fostering communication and synergies between the Strategic Projects of PANORAMED and with the MED Sustainable Tourism Community.
The partner Lazio Region -coordinator of  WP3  Studying- then presented the advancements of the study activities and, in particular, the ongoing comparative analysis of policies and governance models in relation to Cultural Routes in the different countries involved in the project. In this context, in collaboration with the Faculty of Tourism of the University of Maribor, several interviews have already been conducted with Tourism Observatories, with the aim of mapping the existing observatories in the Mediterranean area and better understanding their needs in terms of data collection. Linked to the future MED Sustainable Path and Cultural Routes Model (MED S&C Path Model), the partnership agreed that the impacts of COVID-19 on the tourism sector should be considered and integrated in some way in its development.
After, the School of Management, Hospitality and Tourism (University of Algarve) -leader of WP4- presented the main contents of this WP  referred to testing activities following studies done in previous WP3. Testing of the set of indicators,  fam trips or  living labs will be organised in the pilot areas to test the MED S&C Path Model. On their side, the Ministry of Tourism of Greece, outlined the activities that will take place during this phase and which have not yet begun. Finally, the coordinator of WP6 (Conference of Peripheral Maritime Regions-CPMR) recalled the main deliverables to be produced during the capitalization phase kicking off in early 2021.
FOSTERING SYNERGIES
Joint e-meeting BEST MED, SMARTMED and MED Sustainable Tourism Community (6th July). 

BEST MED and SMARTMED  projects organised a joint e-meeting last 6th of July in order to exchange initiatives linked to coordination activities.The leader partner of the MED Sustainable Tourism Community (Provincial Council of Barcelona) was also invited to present its activities and main tasks.

Both project's leaders -El legado andalusí Andalusian Public Foundation (BEST MED) and the Ministry of Tourism of Croatia (SMARTMED)- highlighted the main foreseen outputs and presented objectives, total project's budgets, partnerships, current and future activities. They also underlined the synergies between the two projects and the activities related to the governance in the field of tourism in the Euro-Mediterranean area. The responsible of WP5  Transferring (Ministry of Tourism of Greece) of BEST MED Project showed the activities linked with interactions and complementarities with other MED Strategic Projects (SPs).  CPMR (Conference of Peripheral Maritime Regions), in charge of WP6  Capitalising of the project talked about  Ways & opportunities to collaborate, an overview of the architecture and objectives of SPs, in particular, and of the Interreg MED Programme, in general.
Mr. Josep Rodríguez ( Provincial Council of Barcelona) presented the 22 territorial cooperation projects that have joined the MED Sustainable Tourism Community and explained its main tasks. Finally, made an introduction to the role of the Horizontal Angels and the works with the givers (Community bulding) and takers (Territorial Antennas). In the context of  Monitoring the Sustainable Tourism Community, the Sustainable Tourism Horizontal Project has designed a monitoring plan for the members of the Community in which BEST MED is taking part. In this sense, the MED Sustainable Tourism Community is identifying the most important elements of the project referred to needs and expectations -among others- and is assisting the project in better achieving and effective transferring and capitalising for BEST MED and the Community as a whole.
In this period we pay special attention to:
BEST MED joined the celebration of the World International Tourism Day that took place last 27th of September. Cultural tourism has been among the hardest hit of all sectors by the pandemic. No country has been unaffected. Restrictions on travel and a sudden drop in consumer demand have led to an unprecedented fall in international tourism numbers, which in turn have led to economic loss and the loss of jobs. On the last celebration of the World Tourism Day, the COVID-19 pandemic has been an opportunity to rethink the future of the cultural and sustainable tourism sector, including how it contributes to the sustainable development goals, through its social, cultural, political, and economic value. These types of tourism can eventually help us move beyond this crisis, by bringing people together and promoting  solidarity and trust –crucial ingredients in advancing the global cooperation so urgently needed at this time-. On this occasion, we selected some images of rural landscapes from the regions of our partners and shared them through our social media in that big day. On the other hand, UNWTO ( United Nations World Tourism Organization) has designated 2020 as the  Year of Tourism and Rural Development as an opportunity to promote the potential of tourism to create jobs and opportunities.
(Below, images of landscapes and rural areas of the partnership shared on BEST MED social media).
Photo on the left: Ms. María de la Concepción de Santa Ana (third on the right), Managing-Director of El legado andalusí Andalusian Public Foundation, accompanied by Mr. Raúl Orellana (Mayor of Órgiva), Mr. Eric Escobedo (Mayor of Lanjarón), Mr. José Javier Martínez (Mayor of Cádiar), Ms. Concepción Pérez Braojos (Town Council of Órgiva) and Ms. Carmen Lidia Reyes Ruiz (Provincial Council of Granada) / Photo on the right: Another moment of this meeting that took place at the Town Council of Órgiva.
WORKING ON A NEW SUSTAINABLE TOURIST MODEL
The Route of the Alpujarras (Andalusia, Spain) as an example of inland and cultural tourism 
The LP (El legado andalusí Andalusian Public Foundation) organized this meeting to present the BEST MED project positions in a visit to the inland area of the Alpujarras (Andalusia, Spain). The Alpujarras is a natural paradise formed by a series of whitewashed picturesque villages of great beauty that extends over the south foothills of Sierra Nevada up to the Mediterranean coast, between the provinces of Granada and Almería. This is an area of contrasts, with a rugged terrain formed by valleys and ravines.
This is the place chosen by the LP for the implementation of the WP4  Testing. In this sense, the Managing Director of the FPA El legado andalusí, Ms. María de la Concepción de Santa Ana Fernández, together with the different mayors of municipalities of the Alpujarras attending, analyzed how this area can give outputs to BEST MED Project and how BEST MED Project can contribute to the sustainable tourism in this area, therefore, in a double direction. Furthermore, strategies of growth were discussed in order to integrate and diversify the offer for the redistribution of tourists in this place which is already a good practice in inland and cultural tourism.
TOWARDS MORE SUSTAINABLE TOURISM FOR EU CITIES AND REGIONS
On 18th September, NAT Commission of the Committee of Regions adopted "Towards more sustainable tourism for EU cities and regions", drafted by Mr. Manuel Alejandro Cardenete Flores (ES/Renew Europe), Deputy Minister for Tourism, Regeneration, Justice and Local Administration of the Regional Government of Andalusia and NECSTouR Vice-President.

Draft opinion notes that tourism generates jobs and wealth across the European Union. It can, however, also have a negative impact on the environment or on society, if not managed properly. 
INTERREG MED PROGRAMME NEWS: WHAT IF MY PROJECT ACTIVITIES ARE AFFECTED BY COVID-19?
BEST MED joined several online meetings organized by INTERREG MED Joint Secretariat in order to prepare "Past, present and future" Conference. On 6th November 2020, the Interreg MED Programme, together with the Agence Nationale de la Cohésion des Territoires (ANCT) organise a brainstorming conference on the future of European territorial cooperation in order to better coordinate and strenghten the governance actions in the Mediterranean.
In response to this challenge, Interreg MED has been committed to create a "PANORAMED" governance platform directly involving the Programme participating States, in addition to the thematic projects since 2014. The conference will be the ocassion to draw lessons from this new approach.
UPCOMING EVENTS
TECHNICAL WORKSHOP
Data management for sustainable tourism: Moving towards a network of Tourism Observatories for a better governance in the Mediterranean
(9th- 10th December, 9h30-13h30 CET)

Originally planned in a face-to-face format, this seminar is been organised as a web seminar due to the health crisis. T
his technical seminar is a public event of BEST MED Project coordinated by the partner Lazio Region. The main objectives with this activity are: Presenting the project goals to stakeholders interested in sustainable tourism in the Interreg MED area, introduce the results of WP3  Studying coordinated by the partner Lazio Region-Regional Tourism Agency and developing the knowledge basis for next WPs of the project.

The main contents will be about developing a network of tourism observatories in the Med Area and in EU, evaluation and development of a first draft of the model for development of sustainability policies along the cultural paths of the Mediterranean  BEST MED Sustainable & Cultural PATH MODEL and discussing the governance of sustainable tourism at European, national and regional-local scale. Specially in the field of data management for tourism planning and cultural paths for mainstreaming sustainability policies in all scales of administration in the MED area.

 


More information about this meeting will be available soon on our website: 
https://best-med.interreg-med.eu/

BEST MED PARTNERSHIP
  • Andalusian Public Foundation El legado andalusí. Leader Partner
    (Spain).

  • Lazio Region (Italy).

  • University of Algarve. School of Management, Hospitality and Tourism
    (Portugal).

  • Croatian Chamber of Economy. Rijeka Country Chamber

    (Croatia).

  • Ministry of Tourism. General Secretariat for Tourism Policy and Development (Greece).

  • CPMR. Conference of Peripheral Maritime Regions of Europe
    (France).

  • National Tourism Organisation of Montenegro (Montenegro).

  • Ministry of Tourism, Regeneration, Justice and Local Administration. Regional Government of Andalusia (Spain).

  • University of Maribor. Faculty of Tourism (Slovenia).

  • Calabria Region. Programming Department. Programming Cooperation and Institutional Capacity
    (Italy).

The aim
BEST MED (Beyond European Sustainable Tourism Med Path) contributes to enhance the Mediterranean Governance in the field of sutainable tourism. Its main challenges are to fight agains seasonality and the lack of effective cooperation among tourism actors in the Med area, including the citizen active participation on the policies design.

Project duration
1/11/2019 - 30/06/2022

Total budget
2.999.774,00 
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