On 21 November at 14:30 CET we will kick off the online event: 25 Years of EuroVelo, laying the foundations for cycling tourism in Europe with an enticing programme. In this article you can find out more about the speakers and the content of the sessions planned for the online event and join us in celebrating EuroVelo's 25th Anniversary!
To start the day, ECF President Henk Swarttouw will give a welcome address to all participants and will be joined by Camille Thomé, who will be the host of the event. Both Henk Swarttouw and Camille Thomé, Director of Vélo & Territoires, sit in the EuroVelo Council and in the ECF Board and have been involved in EuroVelo activities for many years.
Opening plenary: Keynote speakers
The online event will then enter its most engaging part starting with a keynote speech by Alessandra Priante, Director Europe at United Nations World Tourism Organisation - UNWTO.
Alessandra Priante has several years of experience in the tourism sector, including past positions at the Italian Ministry of Culture and Ministry of Agricultural, Food, and Forestry policies. She specialised in the Middle East area, is the author of several publications, and teaches culture and tourism management at several universities in Italy and beyond.
The event will follow with another keynote from Valentina Superti, Director of Ecosystem II: Tourism & Proximity at DG GROW.
Valentina Superti is a Director responsible for policies on tourism, textiles, social economy, and the digitalisation of industry at DG GROW, at the European Commission. An EU law graduate at the College of Europe, she served in several Directorates and was Deputy Head of Cabinet of European Commission Vice-President Antonio Tajani. From 2015 to 2021, she served as Resources Director at DG GROW.
Panel discussion: From the origins up to the 2030 EuroVelo Strategy. How to accelerate the further development of the European cycle route network?
A panel discussion will follow the two insightful speeches. The first panel of the day will take a look at the past and future of EuroVelo with Philip Insall, former Director of Health and International at Sustrans and Agathe Daudibon, EuroVelo Manager. After reflecting on the history of EuroVelo, the discussion will be moderated by Alex Crevar, journalist and expert travel writer, and will focus on strategies to accelerate the further development of the network and meet the ambitious objectives set for 2030.
Philip Insall was responsible for creating the public health and international liaison programmes of the UK-based transport NGO Sustrans, beginning in the mid-1990s. He was a member of the first EuroVelo working group, helped to create powerful international partnerships to develop the network, and sat on the EuroVelo Council from its inception until 2021, steering the project and supporting the ECF EuroVelo Management Team.
Agathe Daudibon became EuroVelo Manager in 2022 after 10 years working at Vélo & Territoires, the French national coordination centre for EuroVelo. She was responsible for cycling itinerary projects and cycling tourism. She then joined the Cerema – a French governmental expertise centre – working on the AVELO 2 program, which aims to support cycling policies in rural and interurban areas.
Alex Crevar is a Journalist, Editor and Consultant dedicated to responsible tourism. Reporting from the Balkans since the late 1990s, his writing appears in numerous publications, including The New York Times, Bicycling, National Geographic, Outside, Lonely Planet, Adventure Cyclist, and The Washington Post.
EuroVelo Data Hub presentation
The following section of the 25 years of Eurovelo online event will be about EuroVelo and the integration of cycling tourism data on route usage, development and promotion, as part of the EuroVelo Data Hub, an innovative tool created by ECF in cooperation with Eco-Counter. Representatives of ECF and Eco-Counter will present the initiative.
Panel discussion: Economic impacts of cycling tourism
The session will follow with a panel discussion led by Holger Haubold, Director of Data and Intellectual Property at ECF, and will feature Enrico Durbano, Chief Executive Officer at Eco-Counter. Moreover, the discussion will include four examples of European countries and regions data sets on the impacts of cycling tourism.
Silvia Marty, Communication Officer at Consorci de les Vies Verdes de Girona, Spain, will introduce a study on the economic and social impact of Vias Verdes of Girona (Greenways), Catalonia. In turn, Miklós Berensci, Program Manager at the Centre for Development of Active and Ecotourism (AÖFK), Hungary, will present the 2020 Cycling tourism development report in the country. Stéphanie Mangin, Head of Monitoring at Vélo & Territoires, France, will talk about the French approach to monitoring the cycle route usage and the economic impact of cycling tourism, while Frank Hofmann of ADFC, Germany, will discuss the yearly Bicycle Travel Analysis report published by the organisation.
Closing session - Keynote speaker The fourth section of this special online celebration sees the participation of a Member of the European Parliament - MEP Ciarán Cuffe, who will reflect on the benefits of the EuroVelo network for European transport and mobility, besides tourism.
Ciarán Cuffe is an Irish member of the Greens/EFA political group, sitting on the ITRE and TRAN Committees of the Parliament as a full member, and on the REGI Committee as a substitute member. He is a trained architect and urban planner, and prior to his election to the European Parliament in 2019, he served as a Dublin City Councillor, Teachta Dála (TD) for Dún Laoghaire, and Minister of State with responsibility for sustainable transport and climate change.
Announcement of the host city of the EuroVelo & Cycling Tourism Conference 2023
To conclude the day, Camille Thomé will present the host city of the 2023 EuroVelo & Cycling Tourism Conference. The EuroVelo Conference will be the European meeting to continue the discussion, and representatives of the host city will share the dates and the invitation.