Sustainable Tourism: International Cooperation for Development

Welcome to the USAID-funded online courses in Sustainable Tourism Development. 

The nine online courses listed below train students, practitioners, donor agency representatives, and others working in related fields to understand and develop tourism and its role in international development. All the course materials are public access (free), but your registration will allow you to actively participate in discussions of the material, and to take quizzes to check yourself for understanding at the end of each course.

Register Now!

If you would like to join the interactive Community of Learning, please email your registration request to learn@biodiversitylinks.organd provide in your email the following data: 

  • First and Last name,
  • Email address,
  • City,
  • Country, and
  • Organization or Affiliation.

Each of the free nine courses include: videos, readings, presentations, discussions, a course quiz, and a downloadable certificate of completion for each separate course.  You can take as many courses as you like in any order. Individual course mastery is set at 80%.  Once you achieve 80% mastery you will be prompted to download your certificate of completion.  There are nine separate certificates of completion, one per course.

Or, try the courses as a guest

To login as a guest without interactive participation, Go to the RIGHT HAND corner of the top banner of this webpage and click on Login.  When the box pops up Click on Login as a Guest. Once logged in as a guest you will then be able to click on any of the 9 courses below and enter. Guests will not receive a certificate or be able to take part in the discussions with the community.

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Students will gain a foundational understanding of Sustainable Tourism in a global context, from the origins of the sustainable tourism movement, to how it relates to policy, economics, development, and conservation.

In this course participants will learn the approach and steps needed to create an outline for a sustainable tourism project.

This course examines how destinations have improved competitiveness by creating  environmentally and socially friendly tourism products and services. The  course emphasizes establishing policies and management plans to  identify and reduce negative impacts created by tourism facilities and  services, and looks at how to create public-private sector management  systems with broad stakeholder support.

In this course students will learn how to successfully promote and facilitate private investment  and financing for sustainable tourism projects.

This  course describes how to establish and develop a tourism business  enterprise. General business principles are discussed and then tailored  to the tourism industry.

In this course students will learn about the high rates of unemployment among youth in developing countries, as well as how to create and implement tourism workforce development programs and assessments, which can increase the competitiveness of a destination while also providing jobs and economic growth.

In this course students will be introduced to a tourism management framework that will help guide them through the process of managing tourism in protected areas, giving them tools and strategies to mitigate conservation threats and allowing economic impacts to flourish in a positive, sustainable manner. 

This course also allows students to evaluate tried and tested conservation models which represent overall tourism trends. Each model consists of various strategies to help implement and coordinate the activities within the models.

SAVE is an acronym for Scientific, Academic, Volunteer and Education which is focused on international travel to developing countries to do good works reflecting individual or socially responsible behavior. SAVE’s focus is on both volunteer sending and volunteer receiving organizations. In this course, students will learn how step-by-step how to develop a SAVE strategy at the national level linked to major generating markets. It will also provide guidelines and an illustrative business plan for developing a SAVE Center at the destination level.

Students will: 1) Understand and evaluate the range of options for meeting off-grid energy needs, highlighting efficient and sustainable use of energy, and 2) Guide the reader through the process of creating a reliable and affordable energy system by working with staff and visitors, equiptment vendors, installers, financial institutions, and energy service providers.