Dates: Jan 19, 2020 to Jan 22, 2020
Location: Victoria Conference Centre, 720 Douglas Street, Victoria

Victoria’s IMPACT Conference tackles tourism’s role in a more sustainable, regenerative world 

What: January 2020 IMPACT Conference program features more than 30 leaders and 200+ delegates tackling the tourism industry’s biggest sustainability issues through panel discussions and workshop.  Taking place in Victoria for the third year, IMPACT Sustainability Travel & Tourism Conference was created with the goal of aligning the Canadian tourism industry, as well as stakeholders and communities touched by tourism, behind a vision to achieve economic, social and environmental sustainability. IMPACT’s focus is on innovation and valid solutions around the positive legacy we want from the tourism and travel industry in a modern and progressive Canada. Having strong Indigenous and new Canadian voices at the conference is also critical component of the discussion. 

Speakers (A full list of speakers is available here): 

Wade Davis - National Geographic Explorer, anthropologist, ethnobotanist, author and photographer whose work has focused on Indigenous cultures, particularly in North and South America. 

Julie Middleton - As head of sustainable practice at the Travel Foundation (UK), Julie supports businesses and governments to embed sustainable thinking and doing into their tourism strategies and operations.

Charlotte Bell, president and CEO, Tourism Industry Association of Canada

Christina Beckmann, senior director, strategy and impact, Adventure Travel Trade Association. Christina has been in the adventure industry for 15 years, leading project teams in more than 30 countries developing national adventure market strategies, industry research, and programs to provide business and guide training. She now leads ATTA’s Climate Action Strategic Initiative.

Bill Alexander, chair of Indigenous Culinary of Associated Nation (ICAN). ICAN’s purpose is to share with the world the many facets of Indigenous food, culinary and cultural experiences across the country.

Kehkashan Basu, founder and president of Green Hope Foundation, and a United Nations Human Rights Champion. Winner of the 2016 International Children's Peace Prize, Kehkashan is a tireless advocate for the Sustainable Development Goals. She is a United Nations Human Rights Champion, the youngest ever Global Coordinator for the UN Environment Program's Major Group for Children & Youth, a Climate Reality Leader and a TEDx speaker

Bob Sandford, chair, Water & Climate Security, United Nations University Institute for Water, Environment & Health* Bob is one of our most popular speakers and has attended since year one


Canada’s only conference to tackle the sustainable future of tourism both nationally and abroad, IMPACT brings national and global experts to lead discussions, as concerns over the future of our planet and tourism’s impact continue to grow. The conference will be co-chaired by Keith Henry, president and CEO of the Indigenous Tourism Association of Canada (ITAC) and Marion Joppé, representing the Travel and Tourism Research Association (TTRA) of Canada.

Moderated session topics ( program at a glance available here)  in 2020 include; Canada’s tourism industry’s progress year over year on climate action and the UN Sustainable Development Goals, challenges and best practices from across the country, striking the right balance between visitors and residents,  aviation and cruise impacts on sustainable tourism, workshops to help delegates choose the best metrics for their regenerative tourism goals—which will help measure and develop holistic tourism development, determining the best SDG’s for each organization and community, and where regenerative tourism fits in tourism and hospitality programs and what it takes to attract and retain talent.

Fast Facts:

  • IMPACT kicks off Sunday, January 19, with a “DAY of IMPACT” – delegates visit thriving local tourism businesses who have implemented innovative sustainable practices into their everyday operations.

  • Conference sessions take place all day January 20 +21 and ½ day on January 22. 

  • Over 200 delegates have registered to date.   

  • IMPACT was launched in 2018 and has doubled in size as the tourism industry’s demand for  solutions and resources continues to grow.

  • Each year the IMPACT team publishes a conference proceedings paper which is available for free, and also conducts workshops across the country on the resources and solutions discussed during the conference. 

  • IMPACT was co-founded by Beattie Tartan, Destination Greater Victoria, Starrboard Enterprises and Synergy Enterprises, all based in Victoria.