From February 2018 till January 2022 our Foundation is involved in a new European program, the InterregMed one. Within it, we are involved in the Specific Objective 3.1 (3rd axis “natural and cultural resources”, theme 1 “sustainable tourism”), which aims to improve and develop a sustainable and responsible maritime and coastal tourism. The project we are partner of, is called Herit-Data: Sustainable Heritage Management towards Mass Tourism Impact thanks to a holistic use of Big and Open Data. The InterregMed program is funded by the European Fund for Regional Developmnet (EFRS), aiming at encouraging and stimulating cooperation and sharing of experiences in the Mediterranean area. Regarding our Foundation the funds are coming both from EFRS and the Ministry of Economics and Finance.
About the winning
The program is divided in modular calls and Heirt-Data partnership attended the second one with Tuscany Region as project leader. The call collected 147 proposals, 96 for single projects and 51 for integrated projects. After a long selection process, on January 2018 the partnership received the positive news to have been selected among the 5 winner of the 51 integrated projects presented, which means just the 10% of the total.
Even if tourism is an important engine for the economic growth, is also cause of the endanger of local heritage and the consequent efforts for its management and preservation. Herit-Data project has the goal to reduce the impact of the activity related to tourism, focusing on two main kind of destinations strongly hit by overflows of tourists: historical city centers and heritage, cultural and archaeological sites, as well the Unesco sites, which happens to be in such a large number in the Mediterranean area (MED).
Being this the context, the project aims to promote a sustainable management of the touristic flows, and at the same time promoting the cultural heritage of the Mediterranean regions, capitalizing technologies and innovations used for Smart Cities in other local and social policy instruments. Project partners will develop, test and transfer solutions (models, strategies, A.i. instruments, App, etc…) in line with the recent changes in the sector and that will help through a platform to collect data and resources and to analyse the impact of tourism on selected destinations. The result will be both an output of the analysis and an instrument to be used the ease the decision making process.
Project partners are made by public and private entities belonging to Italy, Spain, Croatia, France, Portugal, plus four Regions member of the IMC (InterMediterranean Commission): Tuscany, Valencia, Occitane, West Greece.
The 15th of May 2018 project activities were officially started with a kick-off in Florence, in Palazzo Strozzi-Sacrati, hosted by Tuscany Region. The meeting was just for the partners, plus we had the pleasure to have as guest the Project Officer. This was the 2nd Stakeholder project meeting, since the 1st one took place via skype in March 2018. Read the news here.
The 3rd Steering Meeting Group happened to be in Montpellier on 23rd November of the same year. Read the news related to the 3rd SG here. At that time Herit-Data was right in the middle of WP3 – studying development, which means project partners were studying and deepening mass tourism effects in Med areas and identifing new and/or already existing data and methods to homogeneously collect them. The WP3 started in March 2018 and ended in April 2019. The deliverables produced in this context were the following:
- A mass tourism study on 6 specific destinations, among which the Unesco area in Florence
- The definition of indicators connected to cultural heritage, that were defined by partner project according also to needs that each destination with a pilot project
In March 2019 the 4th Steering Group meeting took place in Dubrovnik, Croatia, hosted by DURA partner. Due to the close border with Herzegovina Region, a study visit to the cities of Trebijn and Mostar was added to the meeting program. You can have more information on the 4th SGM here.
The results obtained in WP3 were preparatory for the following WP4 – testing, as its aim is to develop an ICT tool to use open data and transform them in new sources of information available for everyone, especially PAs and policy makers. These entities will be then supported by the tool for tourism management in the decision making process. Further on, the tool will be tested in 5 destination among those of the Herit-Data partnership, in order to adapt and transfer the tool in other Mediterranean destination once the project is over. At the moment partner are studying the development of one or more platform to be used according to project needs (can communicate internally and externally). WP4 started in May 2019 and will end in December 2020.
To always be updated on Herit-Data progresses, please visit the official website (https://herit-data.interreg-med.eu/)
Here’s the list of the e-flashes that monthly tell more about project development and give an overview of tourism sphere. By clicking on the month the link will open on the correspondent e-flash