The ICRT is a network of people who support the Cape Town Declaration through their work and it has a number of sister organisations, affiliate centre. The ICRT’s structure is best understood as a network with a hub in the UK and nodes in a number of countries and regions. The hub ICRT is based in the UK and maintains this webpage. The ICRT was established in 2002 by Harold Goodwin as part of the legacy of the 1st International Conference on Responsible Tourism in Destinations and the Cape Town Declaration of 2002 The ICRT has always been an independent organisation,
The Cape Town Declaration reminded us of the world’s diversity: “Relishing the diversity of our world’s cultures, habitats and species and the wealth of our cultural and natural heritage, as the very basis of tourism, we accept that responsible and sustainable tourism will be achieved in different ways in different places.”
The 2022 Responsible Tourism Charter was signed on Magna Carta Island on 6th November
The Cape Town Declaration on Responsible Tourism in Destinations dates to 2002, twenty years on and with an accelerating climate crisis caused by greenhouse gas emissions, biodiversity extinction and the 2015 SDGs it was time to revise the Responsible Tourism Movement's statement of purpose. On Magna Carta Island where it is believed King John signed the Magna Carta the 2022 Responsible Tourism Charter was launched. Among those present to celebrate the launch, there was a large group from India, now the world's leading Responsible Tourism destination and people from 14 countries and four continents. As the preamble to the new Charter affirms
"Sustainability is an aspiration. It will only be realised if and when we take responsibility for making tourism sustainable. Responsibility drives sustainability. Responsible Tourism is about "making better places for people to live in and better places for people to visit."
The diversity of our world makes travel worthwhile and generates tourism. Few businesses or destinations can address all the issues on the Responsible Tourism agenda. We need to explain why we take responsibility for the things we choose to improve through tourism and the impacts of our efforts."
The new 2022 Responsible Tourism Charter is available here
The members of the ICRT network share a common purpose in developing and promoting the concept of Responsible Tourism through advocacy, education, training and research. The International network of ICRTs share a common commitment to the 2002 Cape Town Declaration on Responsible Tourism in Destinations and work severally and together to further its objectives.
The ICRTs endorse the concept of Responsible Tourism as defined in the Cape Town Declaration and ensure that all activity is consistent with the spirit of the Declaration. Responsible Tourism cannot be reduced to the green agenda; in all its activities the triple bottom line and the ethic of responsibility will be addressed.
- Campaigning to promote the practice of Responsible Tourism whether by promoting the ideas or demonstration projects.
- One of the core objectives of the international network of ICRTs is to encourage and facilitate South-South exchange and to enable Responsible Tourism academics and practitioners to further the development of Responsible Tourism through the exchange of experience, knowledge and skills.
- Advocacy: to run conferences and workshops and disseminate information through print and other media about the principles and practice of Responsible Tourism.
- Research: to undertake research on the practice of Responsible Tourism to create knowledge about the impacts of Responsible Tourism strategies and to determine which approaches are most successful in achieving the objectives of Responsible Tourism.
- Training: to provide training on Responsible Tourism and undergraduate, postgraduate and professional levels both independently and in association with the ICRT
There are affiliated centres in
- Australia link
- Barcelona & Catalunya link
- Brazil link
- Canada link
- China link
- Finland link
- India link
- South East Asia link
- Ireland link
- Russia link
- Sri Lanka link
- Sweden link
- Southern Africa
- West Africa link
There is no blueprint, no internationally valid prescription for how tourism should be made more sustainable. The salience and importance of issues vary from place to place, affected by the cultural and natural environment, and solutions vary too.
The ICRT is composed of Affiliate Centres and individual supporters
There is an ICRT supporters group on Linked in for all those individuals who support the principles of the Cape Town Declaration and who are taking responsibility to make tourism better. ICRT Supporters Group
Each ICRT is autonomous and responsible for its own funding and activities. When, and if, we are successful in achieving joint funding for activities a separate agreement will be drawn up to cover the management of such initiatives.
Although the affiliate centres legally and administratively separate (the UK ICRT has no responsibility for the activities or statements of organisations which use the same name or acronym), the ICRTs, as sister organisations, do have a shared interest in developing Responsible Tourism and in maintaining the integrity of Responsible Tourism and the good name of the ICRTs which now exist in a number of countries.
Only the hub ICRT can create or endorse further ICRT’s – the ICRT network is not a franchise and no network member can create sub-branches or franchises without agreement from the hub ICRT. All ICRTs have the same rights of direct access to the hub ICRT.
ICRTs have different legal forms in each country and will have different programmes – this reflects the Responsible Tourism commitment to diversity. We recognise that Responsible Tourism will take different forms in different countries and that national programmes of activity will reflect this and differ. Recognising the need to engage in income-generating activities to sustain the organisations, none of the ICRTs are or will become consultancies, commercial enterprises or for-profit companies. Each ICRT will be open to all those form industry, the academy and NGOs who support the Cape Town Declaration
Each ICRT in the network is expected to provide annually a short statement of its legal form, officers (with contact details), current activities and priorities – the hub ICRT will post these on its website.
The network has value and no individual ICRT can be permitted to jeopardise the reputation and standing of the hub ICRT, individual sister organisations or of the network. This is enforced by the hub ICRT. This hub website provides the definitive list of those in the network. The hub ICRT retains the right to de-list any ICRT which has breached the spirit of this agreement and/or brought the network or its individual members into disrepute.