The Center for Responsible Travel (CREST) is a globally recognized nonprofit organization dedicated to transforming the way the world travels. Based in Washington, DC but with an international scope, CREST provides solutions, resources, and support to governments, policymakers, tourism businesses, and nonprofit organizations to confront tourism’s most pressing issues.

Our Vision & Mission

Vision: A world where travel benefits communities and the environment.
Mission: To be a center of tourism knowledge, empowerment, and action for destination communities.

Our History

Originally known as the Center for Ecotourism and Sustainable Development (CESD), CREST was established in 2003 as a bi-coastal institute, with offices at Stanford University and in Washington, DC. It was co-founded by Dr. William (Bill) Durham, a highly respected Stanford Professor of Anthropology and a MacArthur “genius” fellow, and Dr. Martha Honey, an author and internationally recognized authority on responsible travel who has been named one of world’s top 10 eco-travel “watchdogs” by Conde Nast Traveler.

Founded in the wake of the UN’s International Year of Ecotourism, CREST initially focused on the role of small-scale ecotourism in empowering communities and conserving precious resources. Over time, our work has evolved to consider how all tourism can be more responsibly planned, developed, and managed across all sectors and geographies. Through innovative field projects, research, consultancies, and advocacy, CREST is taking action to address our world’s key threats to securing a sustainable future.

Our Strategic Plan (2023-2026)

In 2022, in preparation of our 20th anniversary, we asked ourselves “Who are We” and “Where are we Going”. After months of work to define the direction of CREST, we developed a new strategic plan in large part by reflecting on our past.

At the heart of CREST’s identity is the word ‘center’, defined by Webster as a point, area, person, or thing that is most important or pivotal in relation to an indicated activity, interest, or condition.

As we embark on the implementation of this strategic plan, we will hold steadfast to our belief in CREST as a center: A center of ideas, empowerment, innovation, and progress for travel & tourism.

group of people listening to prsentation, overlayed with text 'our approach'
view of Lake Tahoe through the trees, overlayed with text 'our approach'