Online Centralparks and CEETO synergy meeting

On the 28th of July 2020, the Centralparks and CEETO project team representatives held an online synergy meeting. The meeting aimed to discuss outcomes of the CEETO project, to share experiences about tourism in and around protected areas and to search for possible meeting points for future cooperation.

CEETO stands for Central Europe Eco-Tourism: tools for nature protection. The project lasted from 01.06.2017 to 31.05.2020 and aimed at implementing an innovative governance system for tourism, based on a participatory planning approach. This helped to improve the managing capacities of protected areas managers. Moreover, CEETO aimed at identifying and testing innovative management and monitoring tools specifically focused on sustainable tourism activities. One of the most important outcomes of the project is eight action plans created for tourism development within the pilot protected areas. The outcomes of the pilot results were summarised into joint Guidelines for developing sustainable tourism in protected areas as well as a Manual for sustainable tourism governance for protected area managers. Moreover, the CEETO project aimed to capitalise common knowledge and set up the CEETO Network platform, which serves as a knowledge hub and exchange platform. 

Centralparks aims to integrate biodiversity conservation and sustainable development in the Carpathian region. The joint strategy for local sustainable tourism development based on the natural and cultural heritage of the Carpathians will be targeted at Carpathian protected area administrations, local communities as well as municipality authorities. The objective of this strategy is to re-conciliate and integrate nature protection with local socio-economic development and to raise support of local communities for the conservation of biological and landscape diversity in the Carpathians. Therefore, a joint meeting between representatives of Centralparks and CEETO provided a very valuable opportunity to identify synergies.

Common issues of both projects

Both the CEETO and Centralparks project target the same issues of biodiversity protection in touristic areas. Both projects are dealing with places exploited by unsustainable tourism, many disagreeing stakeholders and a lack of cross-regional and international cooperation, among others. The Centralparks team was delighted to have an opportunity to ask arising questions and learn from the experience of the CEETO project.

Fruitful discussion

During the meeting, many questions were discussed, mostly focusing on sustainable tourism development in and around protected areas, building international and local cooperation, stakeholder involvement and sharing project outcomes with the public. The Centralparks representatives are very thankful for the CEETO representatives’ time and efforts to discuss several relevant topics. The synergy meeting gave us many new ideas and questions for consideration and we will gladly keep in contact for future cooperation.  

For further information on the CEETO project, you can revisit the presentations of the Final conference here.