The world must holistically face the twofold challenge of climatic change and poverty. At the Johannesburg Summit and the Brussels Programme of Action, the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) reported that the tourist sector plays a part in achieving the Millennium Development Goals, in particular those related to combating poverty, preserving the environment and creating job opportunities for women, indigenous communities and young people.

The Mediterranean is the world epicentre of tourism, which is immersed in an unprecedented mutation process that requires a high dose of innovation. It should be mentioned that the Balearic Islands and Catalonia are the top two communities for international arrivals of tourists to Spain, which itself is the third tourist destination in the world. Both autonomous communities as a whole have more than 500,000 hotel places, which represent about 35% of the total for Spain, and the main hotel chains in the Balearic Islands and Catalonia have a presence in almost all major tourist destinations worldwide.

Moreover, the Western Mediterranean area is a unique place where stress arises in connection with the preservation of the quality of the coastal system, the integral water cycle management, and the models for obtaining and supplying drinking water. To face such a stress, a proper management of the environment and water as a basic resource for the survival of the human race is critical. Thus, the Mediterranean area is one of the sites that best reflects contemporary pressure on water management due to its climate and scarcity of drinking water.

In the strategic fields of Tourism and Water, no other knowledge institution in Spain has a track record as solid or committed as the UIB or the UdG, since the characteristics of its geographical, environmental, cultural and economic surroundings have given rise to this. The common denominator in their regional surroundings stems from the application of knowledge to a resource as valuable and necessary for living as water. Similarly, tourism has become their main source of activity and economic wealth and generates opportunities for people. Tourism and water are, therefore, the common denominators, shaping their ability to make significant contributions within the framework of the global society, and providing also a lever towards the future, supported on the basis of the Specialisation Lines of both universities.

Proyecto financiado por el Ministerio de Educación, Cultura y Deporte en el marco del Programa Campus de Excelencia Internacional

Universitat de les Illes Balears ⋅ Ctra. de Valldemossa, km 7.5 ⋅ Palma ⋅ 07122 Illes Balears ⋅ Tel: +34 971 173 000
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