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The project CULTOUR has the goals to overcome the skills gap and foster mobility in Tourism sector trough the recognition, validation and up-skilling of intercultural competences for tourism jobs.


Tourism is a core field of the European economy, accounting for over 5% of EU GDP and employing an estimated 15.2 million persons. It also has one of the highest labour mobility rates across Europe. Nevertheless, skills shortage in tourism jobs is putting at a real risk the employment in the sector.




The partners of CULTOUR project have identified that one of the main areas of skills gap in tourism sector is related to the growing requirement of intercultural competencies needed to deal with customers, co-workers and employees. This skills gap is transversal to the tourism sector and affects a wide range of professional roles, including employees, instructors and employers.

Taking into account the very high proportion of workers without formal qualifications, validation of informal and non-formal learning is crucial for enhancing workers mobility.

To do so, the CULTOUR will implement the following activities:

Identify the specific intercultural knowledge, skills and competences required for tourism sector jobs;

Design innovative methodologies to train intercultural competencies in tourism jobs;
Establish a common framework of intercultural competencies for tourism sector jobs between the participating countries, to facilitate the validation and transparency of skills and mobility of tourism professionals;

Develop an Open Online Center to reinforce learning provision and exchange of experience.

The project involves 6 partners from European countries, in which more than 10% of the citizens are occupied in tourism:

SUD CONCEPT, France – project promoter and coordinator
Business Foundation for Education, Bulgaria

ERIFO, Italy


ISQ, Portugal


The project started in September 2015 and its first activity is a survey among employers, employees, VET trainers and company instructors, as well as policy experts and stakeholders. It aims to identify the intercultural competencies, which are most needed in the tourism sector jobs and the ways to achieve these competencies.

The initiative has been implemented with the support of the European Commission, Erasmus+ Programme and will continue until September 2017.