The ISEAL is the global membership organisation for ambitious, collaborative and transparent sustainability systems. ISEAL advocates for the development and adoption of credible, effective sustainability systems, and works to promote the conditions for their uptake. ISEAL members are sustainability systems and accreditation bodies dedicated to delivering benefits for people and the planet. They are committed to continually improving their systems and impacts through learning and innovation; collaborating with stakeholders and peers; and are transparent and truthful about how their systems work and how they measure their impacts.
The GSTC establishes and manages the GSTC Criteria, global standards for sustainable travel and tourism, the result of a worldwide effort to develop a common language about sustainability in tourism.
GSTC Chairman Luigi Cabrini said, “As a tourism-related scheme, we are proud that GSTC meets ISEAL’s eligibility criteria to become an ISEAL Community Member, be part of the important group of organizations that form the alliance. The GSTC has been dedicating years of effort to adhere to the concepts inherent in ISEAL and to apply them to the travel and tourism industry. From our inception our Bylaws have continuously referenced doing so, and as an ISEAL Community Member, GSTC will continue to improve its system.”
GSTC Assurance Manager Claudia Bustinza said, “One of the key activities of the GSTC is Providing Assurance for Sustainable Tourism, which includes Accreditation of Certification Bodies and Recognition of Standards and Systems.”
GSTC Accreditation: GSTC partners with ASI (Assurance Services International) to provide accreditation services for Certification Bodies that certify hotels/accommodations and tour operators as sustainable. GSTC also provides accreditation services for Certification Bodies that certify destinations as sustainable. This provides the marketplace a credible means of selecting Certification Bodies that have been verified by an impartial, credible assurance provider.*
GSTC Recognition: GSTC provides a formal indication of other standards that align with the GSTC Criteria. GSTC-Recognized means that a sustainable tourism standard has been deemed equivalent to the GSTC Criteria for sustainable tourism. This designation is made by GSTC’s expert, independent Assurance Panel. GSTC-Recognized refers to a standard or a system and does not mean that the Certification Body using the standard is accredited.
ISEAL Executive Director Karin Kreider stated she is delighted to be able to welcome GSTC to the ISEAL community. “I applaud the Global Sustainable Tourism Council on becoming an ISEAL Community Member. This step reflects their commitment to credible and effective practices. I look forward to GSTC sharing their experience as a well-established sustainability system and becoming a valuable part of the ISEAL learning community.”
* The GSTC Criteria form the foundation for Accreditation for Certification Bodies that certify hotels/accommodations, tour operators/transport providers, and destinations as having sustainable policies and practices in place. GSTC does not directly certify any products or services; but provides an accreditation program through its partner ASI (Assurance Services International) to accredit Certification Bodies.