Contributing to the International Network of Sustainable Tourism

The  United Nations World Tourism Organisation's International Network of Sustainable Tourism Observatories (INSTO) is a network of tourism observatories monitoring the economic, environmental and social impact of the tourism at destination level that through research seeks to contribute to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

Further information about the programme can be found on the UNWTO website -


Nurturing a dynamic network of partners that strive together towards creating healthy places for tourists and the host communities, leaving resilient destinations for future generations.


The University of Waikato tourism programme was established in 1996 by Charlie Panakera, now adjunct Professor of the School of Hospitality Management at the University of the Solomon Islands. Charlie is a Solomon Islander and initially drove the tourism programme at the Waikato Management School, recognised in 2021 as New Zealand's leading Business School in the Times Higher Supplement ranking lists.

The Waikato tourism programme contributes to  International Network of Sustainable Tourism Observatories established by the UNWTO and has done so since 2017 and its activities centre on the seaside resort of Raglan.   Since this period we have examined visitor and resident perceptions of Raglan, examined programmes of waste management and looked at issues of the impact of tourism and the peer-to-peer home rental services on the renting of homes in Raglan. The programme is incorporated into the teaching curriculum of the tourism major of the Bachelor degrees at the University of Waikato Management School.

The programme's research director is Professor Chris Ryan, who was named as one of the world's top 1% of researchers in a PLoS One survey of global researchers.

We are proud to be associated with the tourism industry in the Waikato region, as well as having close links with tourism stakeholders in New Zealand, China and the Philippines by advising a similar programme in the Batanes Islands that is directed by the University of the Philippines, Diliman.


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