Star Growth – Sustainable Tools & Activities for Rural tourism and ecotourism SME’s Growth

TIMESPAN OF THE PROJECT: 01/01/2023 – 31/12/2025


The general objective of the project is to enhance the sustainable growth of SMEs operating in the rural tourism and ecotourism sectors in Greece, Cyprus, Bulgaria, Slovenia, Romania and Italy, by providing technical and financial support, whilst boosting their awareness, development and capacity in the area of sustainable innovations.

The project’ specific objectives are:

  • Supporting 90 rural tourism and ecotourism SMEs in Greece, Cyprus, Bulgaria, Slovenia, Romania and Italy, in developing their skills and capacities in sustainable tourism, whilst creating sustainability strategies in line with the needs and priorities of their territory.
  • Providing capacity building and technical assistance to the selected SMEs, by applying European sustainability frameworks and tools.
  • Fostering innovative practices and solutions, which can provide business destinations with heightened resilience to shocks, enhanced social, economic and environmental awareness and responsibility.
  • Building effective mechanisms for best practice exchange and dissemination of transferable tools and knowledge between the SMEs, also at a European level.


  • WP1. Management
  • WP2. Selection of tourism SMEs for participation in the support scheme
  • WP3. Customized technical support activities
  • WP4. Capacity building on sustainable tourism growth
  • WP5. Monitoring and reporting of support schemes


  • Adoption of sustainable and innovative practices by receiving both technical and financial support;
  • Development and implementation of sustainability/ digital strategies and identification of funding assistance in order to implement these strategies;
  • Familiarization with the use of specific technologies (related to smart tourism, standardization etc.); performance of PEF/OEF studies and application for environmental sustainability certification;
  • Enhancement of tourism SMEs’ staff skills and capacity on sustainable growth and digital transformation;
  • Knowledge transfer and peer to peer learning regarding technology and innovative practices, sustainable/ digital/ smart solutions and modern tourism megatrends.


Funded by the European Union. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or the European Education and Culture Executive Agency (EACEA). Neither the European Union nor EACEA can be held responsible for them.