The National Geographic Society ans Ashoka's Changemakers opened the entry process for the second annual "Geotourism Challenge" to showcase how tourism done well sustains, enhances and preserves local culture and the environment. The competition will identify individuals worldwide wo have introduced the most innovative practices in tourism and destination stewardship.
Conducted in partnership with Ashoka's Changemakers, the global Geotourism Challenge will accept online applications at www.changemakers.net geotourismchallenge through May 20, 2009. Applicants must demonstrate an innovation that protects destination quality and furthers geotourism, defined by National Geographic as "tourism that sustains or enhances the geographical character of a place - its environments, culture, aesthetics, heritage and the well-being of its residents."
During this period, anyone can debate, endorse or provide additional information on the entries. A distinguished panel of judges - including Keith Bellows, editor of National Geographic Traveler magazine, and Erika Harms, United Nations Foundation's executive director for sustainable development - will review the applications and select the finalists. The online community will then vote for the Geotourism Challenge winners, who will be announced this summer. Each winner will receive a cash prize of USD 5,000.
Participate at The Geotourism Challenge 2009: Power of Place - Sustaining the Future of Destinations, which is hosted at www.changemakers.net/geotourismchallenge.