Tourism and related services — Sustainable tourism — Principles, vocabulary and model

This document specifies the fundamental concepts and principles of, and a model for, sustainable tourism. This document is applicable to private and public organizations and destinations, regardless of their size and location, plus other interested parties engaged in sustainable tourism development.

Tourisme et services connexes — Tourisme durable — Principes, vocabulaire et modèle

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Status
Published
Publication Date
04-May-2022
Current Stage
4060 - Close of voting
Start Date
23-Mar-2021
Completion Date
22-Mar-2021
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INTERNATIONAL ISO
STANDARD 23405
First edition
2022-05
Tourism and related services —
Sustainable tourism — Principles,
vocabulary and model
Tourisme et services connexes — Tourisme durable — Principes,
vocabulaire et modèle
Reference number
ISO 23405:2022(E)
© ISO 2022
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ISO 23405:2022(E)
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© ISO 2022

All rights reserved. Unless otherwise specified, or required in the context of its implementation, no part of this publication may

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© ISO 2022 – All rights reserved
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ISO 23405:2022(E)
Contents Page

Foreword ........................................................................................................................................................................................................................................iv

Introduction .................................................................................................................................................................................................................................v

1 Scope ................................................................................................................................................................................................................................. 1

2 Normative references ..................................................................................................................................................................................... 1

3 Terms and definitions .................................................................................................................................................................................... 1

3.1 Terms related to sustainability ............................................................................................................................................... 1

3.2 Terms related to the environmental dimension of sustainability ............................................................ 2

3.3 Terms related to the economic dimension of sustainability ......................................................................... 3

3.4 Terms related to the social dimension of sustainability ................................................................................... 3

3.5 Terms related to tourism destinations ............................................................................................................................. 4

4 Principles of sustainable tourism ..................................................................................................................................................... 5

4.1 Manage sustainable tourism effectively .......................................................................................................................... 5

4.2 Guarantee the rights of local communities ................................................................................................................... 5

4.3 Conserve the natural environment and its biodiversity ................................................................................... 5

4.4 Consider cultural heritage and local values ................................................................................................................. 5

4.5 Stimulate the social and economic development of tourism destinations ........................................ 5

4.6 Guarantee the quality of products, processes and attitudes......................................................................... 5

4.7 Provide for the health, safety and security of destinations ........................................................................... 6

4.8 Take legal compliance into consideration ...................................................................................................................... 6

4.9 Prepare for emergencies and establish response procedures ..................................................................... 6

5 Sustainable tourism model .......................................................................................................................................................................6

5.1 General ........................................................................................................................................................................................................... 6

5.2 Sustainable tourism model .......................................................................................................................................................... 6

Annex A (informative) Principles of sustainable tourism and the Sustainable Development

Goals (SDGs) ..............................................................................................................................................................................................................8

Bibliography .............................................................................................................................................................................................................................10

iii
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ISO 23405:2022(E)
Foreword

ISO (the International Organization for Standardization) is a worldwide federation of national standards

bodies (ISO member bodies). The work of preparing International Standards is normally carried out

through ISO technical committees. Each member body interested in a subject for which a technical

committee has been established has the right to be represented on that committee. International

organizations, governmental and non-governmental, in liaison with ISO, also take part in the work.

ISO collaborates closely with the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) on all matters of

electrotechnical standardization.

The procedures used to develop this document and those intended for its further maintenance are

described in the ISO/IEC Directives, Part 1. In particular, the different approval criteria needed for the

different types of ISO documents should be noted. This document was drafted in accordance with the

editorial rules of the ISO/IEC Directives, Part 2 (see www.iso.org/directives).

Attention is drawn to the possibility that some of the elements of this document may be the subject of

patent rights. ISO shall not be held responsible for identifying any or all such patent rights. Details of

any patent rights identified during the development of the document will be in the Introduction and/or

on the ISO list of patent declarations received (see www.iso.org/patents).

Any trade name used in this document is information given for the convenience of users and does not

constitute an endorsement.

For an explanation of the voluntary nature of standards, the meaning of ISO specific terms and

expressions related to conformity assessment, as well as information about ISO's adherence to

the World Trade Organization (WTO) principles in the Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT), see

www.iso.org/iso/foreword.html.

This document was prepared by Technical Committee ISO/TC 228, Tourism and related services.

Any feedback or questions on this document should be directed to the user’s national standards body. A

complete listing of these bodies can be found at www.iso.org/members.html.
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ISO 23405:2022(E)
Introduction

In the past 10 years sustainability has become a subject of great importance for the tourism sector.

Numerous factors have contributed to the fast growth of sustainability as a need. Accommodation

establishments, tour operators, restaurants, tourist attractions and others have applied strategies,

communications processes, standards and certifications schemes. The global interest in environmental

and sociocultural themes has increased the desire of tourists to experience more sustainable services

and products.

Sustainability in tourism is almost always addressed from the perspective of environmental protection,

CO emissions reduction and care in the consumption of energy and water. Sometimes there is also a

concern with social issues, involving local communities or economic aspects, which basically involves

the viability of businesses.

However, despite this increasing interest, today most organizations understand sustainability in

different ways. Different approaches have been adopted by organizations and digital platforms help to

spread all types of information about sustainable tourism.

Today it is possible to identify more than a hundred references – private, public, international, regional

and national – that naturally present many different concepts and understanding about sustainable

tourism.

Additionally, both ISO 21401 and ISO 20611 contain concepts about sustainable tourism.

In 2015, the United Nations General Assembly approved the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development

and with it the Sustainable Development Goals, a framework comprising 17 goals. Tourism is an

economic powerhouse and can play a significant role in delivering sustainable solutions for people, the

planet, prosperity and peace.

Therefore, it is acknowledged that there are a lot of challenges for sustainable development but that one

of them is critical: the recognition of the minimal principles for sustainable tourism and a definition of

a common understanding.

These principles are the basis for the sustainable development of tourism and should be taken into

account as much as possible by interested parties.

Worldwide it is recognized that tourist destinations select development models that can respond to

either supply or demand. Both of them have their attributes, and destinations choose them according to

their interests, tastes, preferences and strategies.

Some characteristics of the demand model are spontaneous growth, emphasis on natural attractions

and a single-minded focus on wealth generation by, in the main, tourism businesses, accompanied by an

intensive use of resources (natural and human), large investment, quicker returns on investment and

low spillover effect. The destination is normally designed and based on icons to attract visitors.

On the other hand, the supply model is characterized by controlled growth, the emphasis not just on

protecting the environment but also making the processes fully sustainable. Businesses are concerned

about profitability but also care about improving the quality of life in their communities. In addition,

the tourist experience is enhanced by high-quality services throughout the visit, the spillover effect

is higher, investment is smaller and there is a slower return on investment. Finally, the destination

designs products rather than attractions.

No matter which of the models is been applied, both should seek recognition as the “archetype” of a

sustainable destination. In addition, destinations should look for the highest spillover effect so that the

local and national economies benefit directly, meaning that a high percentage of tourism expenditure

remains in the surrounding communities, with a direct positive impact on improving the quality of life

of people and relieving poverty.

Businesses need to demonstrate their commitment not only to the environment but also to sustainability

globally. Good practices guide businesses to identify, assess and mitigate any negative impacts to the

© ISO 2022 – All rights reserved
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ISO 23405:2022(E)

environment, social fabric and local culture, while maintaining a high quality of service and protecting

their employees and addressing the needs and expectations of their interested parties. Sustainability

is generally incorporated as a transversal axis in all public or private business policies, improving

innovation and competitiveness as a key to maintain leadership. Sustainable tourism can be a way of

being and living, not a way of doing.

This document is intended to provide a common and sound basis for the process of sustainable

development for all interested parties and to increase the expected potential benefits for the tourism

sector.
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INTERNATIONAL STANDARD ISO 23405:2022(E)
Tourism and related services — Sustainable tourism —
Principles, vocabulary and model
1 Scope

This document specifies the fundamental concepts and principles of, and a model for, sustainable

tourism. This document is applicable to private and public organizations and destinations, regardless

of their size and location, plus other interested parties engaged in sustainable tourism development.

2 Normative references
There are no normative references in this document.
3 Terms and definitions
For the purposes of this document, the following terms and definitions apply.

ISO and IEC maintain terminology databases for use in standardization at the following addresses:

— ISO Online browsing platform: available at https:// www .iso .org/ obp
— IEC Electropedia: available at https:// www .electropedia .org/
3.1 Terms related to sustainability
3.1.1
sustainability

state of the global system, including environmental, social and economic aspects, in which the needs

of the present are met without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs

Note 1 to entry: The environmental, social and economic aspects interact, are interdependent and are often

referred to as the three dimensions of sustainability.
Note 2 to entry: Sustainability is the goal of sustainable development (3.1.2).
[SOURCE: ISO Guide 82:2019, 3.1]
3.1.2
sustainable development

organizing principle for achieving human development goals while at the same time sustaining the

ability of natural systems to provide the natural resources and ecosystem services upon which the

economy and society depend

Note 1 to entry: The desired result is a state of society where living conditions and resources are used to continue

to meet human needs without undermining the integrity and stability of the natural system.

Note 2 to entry: Sustainable development can be defined as development that meets the needs of the present

without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.
3.1.3
sustainable tourism

tourism sector that takes full account of its current and future economic, social and environmental

impacts, addressing the needs of visitors, employees, the industry, host communities and climate change

among others, while working closely with interested parties on the implementation of sustainability

policies
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ISO 23405:2022(E)
3.1.4
sustainability aspect

activities, elements, practices, products or services of organizations and other providers in the tourism

sector which can interact with the dimensions of sustainability (environmental, social and economic)

Note 1 to entry: A significant aspect of sustainability is one that has or can have a significant impact.

Note 2 to entry: Some examples of sustainability aspects are energy consumption, solid waste generation,

recyclable packaging and water consumption.
3.1.5
sustainability objective

intent to achieve global sustainability, resulting from the sustainability policy that an enterprise or

destination sets itself to achieve, being quantified whenever possible
3.1.6
impact on sustainability

change to the environment, society or economy, wholly or partially resulting from an organization's

sustainability aspects
Note 1 to entry: Impacts on sustainability can be adverse or beneficial.
3.2 Terms related to the environmental dimension of sustainability
3.2.1
climate change adaptation
process of adjustment to actual or expected climate and its effects

Note 1 to entry: In human systems, adaptation seeks to moderate or avoid harm or exploit beneficial opportunities.

Note 2 to entry: In some natural systems, human intervention can facilitate adjustment to expected climate and

its effects.
[SOURCE: ISO 14090:2019, 3.1, modified — term revised.]
3.2.2
climate change mitigation

human intervention to reduce greenhouse gas emissions or enhance greenhouse gas removals

[SOURCE: ISO 14050:2020, 3.8.6]
3.2.3
environment

surroundings in which an organization operates, including air, water, land, natural resources, flora,

fauna, humans and their interrelationships

Note 1 to entry: Surroundings can extend from within an organization to the local, regional and global system.

Note 2 to entry: Surroundings can be described in terms of biodiversity, ecosystems, climate or other

characteristics.
[SOURCE: ISO 14001:2015, 3.2.1]
3.2.4
environmental impact

change to the environment (3.2.3), whether adverse or beneficial, wholly or partially resulting from an

organization's environmental aspects
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