Accelerating SME capacity and innovation for sustainable urban tourism

The TOURBAN project, funded by the European Union’s programme for the competitivity of SMEs, aimed at accelerating SMEs capacity and innovation for sustainable urban tourism. 


Tourism: a challenge for European cities

European cities are facing multiple challenges when it comes to managing the impacts and urban transformation processes deriving from tourism. These include increased sanitary precautions, strain on limited urban resources like water, energy and space, waste management, gentrification, and the cohabitation between residents and visitors as well as precarious hospitality working conditions.   

Adopt innovative solutions for a more sustainable tourism

In the light of this development, Tourban project concentrated its efforts to tackle the adaptation of European tourism companies towards more sustainable, low-carbon, circular and resource-efficient business models. As essential players in this transition, SMEs need to be provided with the necessary skills, capacity and financial resources, if they are to become innovation and sustainability catalysts. Furthermore, the project supported SMEs in uptaking international best practices and developing innovative solutions that render them both more sustainable and competitive through new and increased revenue streams, reduced costs and decreased resource consumption as well as a better visibility and positioning. Ultimately, Tourban aimed to foster cross-sector collaboration to close the loop in circular economy processes and spearhead a transnational movement towards tourism sustainability in urban areas across Europe.

Eight partners from seven countries

TOURBAN was implemented by a consortium of 8 partners from 7 countries: Barcelona Chamber of COmmerce, Industry, Services and Navigation (Spain), Institute for Tourism Research in Northern Europe (Germany), Estonian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Estonia), Breda University of Applied Science (Netherlands), Creative Business Network (Denmark), City of Dubrovnik Development Agency (Croatia) Hungarian Hospitality Employers’ Association (Hungary), and B.Link Barcelona Strategic Projects.