Call for proposals: EU Competence Centre to support data management in tourism destinations

EU funding opportunities

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The European Commission has published a call for a Preparatory Action on Tourism linked to the Single Market and the Horizon Europe programmes. Its objective is to promote the creation and functioning of a self-sustainable competence centre, that will expand the adoption of data-driven destination management to support tourist destinations across the EU, constituting a well-structured and up-to-date knowledge hub that will support destinations on market trends, data sources, regulatory developments on policy and data use, with active links for information sharing with EU-wide support mechanisms for the transition path for tourism.

This competence centre shall, in particular:

  • provide destinations with guidance and information related to data management, as well as commercial information on how to find and use data and how to apply data-intensive information to address policy actions and strategies;
  • support destinations in developing and implementing data management and sharing skills and strategies with a long-term perspective, in line with policy priorities at EU level and with the work carried out by regional and national statistical offices, including in cooperation with Eurostat;
  • establish cross-border/transnational cooperation between organisations and relevant actors of the target ecosystem to support the creation and transfer of knowledge and good practices in data management and sharing.

The competence centre needs to have a clear added value for the double transition towards a more sustainable and more digital tourism ecosystem. Transferable knowledge, developed with specific target stakeholders, must be made available to all EU destinations and strong and long-term strategies must be developed to keep project results up-to-date and available even after the funding period.

The funded project selected has to establish the Knowledge Hub with a trade and information support scheme for destination management organisations (DMOs) across the EU and, optionally, for tourism SMEs, in order to support their transition to data-driven management practices. The hub must support data management and sharing practices between destinations and regions, as well as within an ecosystem of destinations.

A project proposal must be submitted by a partnership composed of at least 4 components (maximum 7), established in at least 3 (maximum 5) eligible States. The partnership must include at least one Business Support Organisation (BSO) and at least one Destination Management Organisation (DMO). The involvement of two regional and/or national statistical offices as consortium members is also encouraged.

BSO refers to a business incubator/accelerator, start-up, laboratory, innovation hub, university or educational institution, research centre or other relevant organisation with proven ability and experience in carrying out SME-centred business support activities.

DMO refers to an authority/stakeholder, public or private, that manages a tourism strategy at local, regional or national level in one of the countries who participate in the proposing consortium. It generally also deals with collateral activities such as business analysis, marketing, strategic and political implementation, interinstitutional and international relations.

The project will have an expected duration of 30-36 months.

The total allocated budget is € 3.000.000. The contribution will cover up to 90% of the eligible project costs. Only one project proposal (one hub) will be funded.

The deadline for applications is on 26 April 2023

The text of the call and the reference documentation are available on the dedicated page of the Funding and tender portal 

Written by: Margherita Genua

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