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Project SITE

The "SITE" project - PROJECT ID: ITHR0200313 ("Shaping Inclusive Tourist Experiences") has been approved for financing as part of the cross-border cooperation programme Interreg Italy-Croatia Programme 2021-2027, which is financed from the European Fund for Regional development (ERDF) within the framework of European Territorial Cooperation which supports cooperation across borders through programmes and projects.

Dubrovnik Airport Ltd (DBV) is one of the 8 project partners and the lead partner of the project is University of Trieste (UNITS)  from Trieste, Italy. 

In Europe, as well as in the Program Area, 25% of the adult population have some form of disability and the old-age index is 136 old people for every 100 young people, and these numbers are increasing. Moreover, almost everyone sooner or later in life experiences, directly or indirectly, difficulties related to permanent disabilities, temporary or situational circumstances, with the risk of being excluded from full participation in society and from travel because of the lack of accessible information, services and facilities. The raising demand for accessible tourism tailored to accommodate the highest number of people represents a key driver for this economic sector and a great business opportunity: more inclusive tourist destinations allow to expand and diversify the number of customers (including people with special needs and requirements such as families, children, elderly, and with disabilities) and overcome the seasonality of tourism flows.

The "SITE" project aims to increase the attractiveness of tourist destinations in the Programme area and to foster tourism across the year through the cross-border dissemination of the culture of Universal Design (UD) in the tourism ecosystem by promoting social inclusion, participation and sharing also using ICTs to reduce barriers (architectural, sensorial, communicative) that limit access to people with disabilities or other needs, as families and the elderly, favouring non-discriminatory solutions.

Project's final goal is developing a methodology to apply Universal Design principles in tourism sites, requiring analysis to determine sustainability from an economic and stakeholder impact perspective.

The  "SITE " partnership combines complementary expertise of eight institutions located in the Programme Area, four in Croatia and four in Italy. The partnership is comprised of two universities (University of Trieste - UNITS and University of Rijeka, Faculty of Tourism and Hospitality Management - FTHM), two municipalities (Municipality of Fano and City of Sibenik), two small and medium enterprises (Arcadya Ltd - CMI and Veasyt Ltd), the airport of Dubrovnik (Dubrovnik Airport Ltd  -DBV), and a non-profit agency for the development of a territory, in this case the City of Dubrovnik (Dubrovnik development agency DURA Ltd).

Project also includes 3 associated organisations (two from Croatia and one from Italy): Croatian Union of Associations of Persons with Disabilities, Šibenik tourist bord and Forum of Adriatic and Ionian Cities – FAIC.

The project started on March 1, 2024 and lasts a total of 30 months. The Kick of meeting of the SITE project was held in Trieste - Italy on March 19 and 20, 2024.

The total budget of the project is EUR 2,076,609 of which the amount of co-financing with grants from the Italy-Croatia Programme 2021-2027 through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) is at a co-financing rate of 80%, i.e. EUR 1,661,287

The total budget of Dubrovnik Airport for the project amounts to EUR 250,000, of which EUR 200,000 is co-financing from the ERDF.