The European SusTEn project (“Sustainable Tourism Entrepreneurship Mechanism”)
It is a sustainable territorial approach for the development of tourism and cultural businesses. This project establishes sustainable tourism as the cornerstone of regional socio-economic development and relies on all activities of the tourism sector.
The Lyon CCI, partner of the SusTEn project, 76% of which is co-financed by the ERDF (European Regional Development Fund) as part of the MED European territorial cooperation programme between 2009 and 2012, is putting the emphasis on collaboration and the predominant role of local stakeholders, based on joint actions and the implementation of regional and transnational networks.
The SusTEn partnership involves major players with know-how and expertise in complementary domains, and brings together seven territories from five southern European countries: Greece (Attica and Western regions), Italy (Venice and Ragusa provinces), Spain (Balearic Islands), Slovenia (Obalno-Kraska region) and France (Rhône département).
- Develop sustainable tourist activities to guarantee the sustainable development and management of natural and cultural resources.
- Design and apply an integrated model to unify and develop sustainable tourism businesses.
- Encourage and help local businesses adopt the concepts of “sustainable entrepreneurship” and integrate Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) practices.
- Develop a sustainable tourism benchmark for businesses.
- Involve major territorial players in the creation and management of initiatives.
- Develop trans-territorial and transnational cooperation.
- Improve the competitiveness and development perspectives of local tourism businesses and products.
As part of the SuSTen, the Lyon CCI identified, within the Greater Lyon area, a sector in particular need of information on and greater awareness of sustainable development issues: catering. In addition, Lyon, the French capital of gastronomy, must be a reference in terms of practices. This is why two actions were undertaken to promote sustainable development in the catering industry.
The first action is the creation of the “Lyon equitable and sustainable Catering” charter, which consists of combining traditional know-how with today’s innovations and tomorrow’s requirements for the planet. By signing this charter, the restaurateurs commit to providing their customers with quality products, promoting local products and raising their employees’ awareness of sustainable development and environmental protection issues.
The signatories of the Charter wish to expand their network, increase communication and exchange on topical affairs concerning sustainable catering. Since they signed the Charter, they have organised several meetings to discuss quality, professionalisation and waste sorting.
The project has helped establish close collaboration with the Greater Lyon authority and the City of Lyon (Lyon Equitable and Sustainable City label) based on this theme, notably the Lyon CCI’s participation in the URBACT project and the dissemination of the approach at regional level.
The second action is the creation of the Bouchons Lyonnais certification. The SusTEn project greatly facilitated the implementation of this approach. The association is currently booming: new certifications, new website, a registered trademark and the objective of developing partnerships and exchanges at national and international level.