By the end of project NaturNet-Redime, its website has become a reference in sustainable tourism management. The long-term objective was to make the web portal Naturnet a social platform for dissemination of information among communities dealing with sustainable development, mainly in rural and remote regions. The project team succeeded to continue with the portal development and started managing new contents under the NaturNet plus project. Co-funded by the Leonardo da Vinci programme for 2 years since 2009, the website is a tool for European regions and enterprises dealing with Environmental Education. The network includes the following organizations: Czech Centre for Science and Society, Videsprojekti, Ligatne, REC Bulgaria, REC Romania, AliTerme and Srpa.
The website covers issues on the sustainable tourism management from a regional perspective. Information focuses on sensitive areas such as protected areas, national parks and coastal zones. It combines the outcomes of the previous project, educational materials and case studies; and methodologies for sustainable tourism developed under REGEO and EMIRES projects. The portal aims at connecting 4 groups of stakeholders. At local level, they include politicians and decision makers in the field of environment and tourism in local governments. At a regional and interregional scale, public authorities, private companies, associations, universities, tourism offices, and tourism industry are targeted. National and European stakeholders consist of experts, trade associations, universities and research centres. Finally, citizens and different tourism-related social networks are of paramount influence for local authorities and tourism services providers. Therefore, their involvement is a key factor to promote sustainable practices in the sector.
In order to raise awareness among these groups, 5 software tools were chosen for the portal: tool for visualisation (HSlayers), Geoportal, GeoGAME, Analytical tools, and Geohosting. Nevertheless, the portal is designed and implemented as a virtual database providing a single entry point to several web-services: URM (Unified Resource Management), social network sites, Geoportal4everybody and semantic web. It integrates different technologies like GIS, e-learning, multimedia, and virtual reality.
The portal is therefore a knowledge repository that promotes participation among several stakeholders and combines inputs for further data analysing.
Czech Center for Science and Society, 2010, PORTAL NATURNET.