Webinar I Launch Online Guideline - Responsible Tourism in Oppressive Regimes



Launch Online Guideline:  
Responsible Tourism in Oppressive Regimes: A Guide for Tour Operators to Put People First

Expert talk
Tuesday, 28 March 2023, 11:00 am - 12:00 pm CEST

Already since 2011, the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights define the responsibility of companies, regardless of size or sector, to respect human rights. A handful of tourism companies are now legally obliged to do so through the German Supply Chain Act. Human rights due diligence is particularly crucial when states take no or insufficient action to mitigate human rights risks. A highly topical issue, as according to "Freedom House", only 20 % of the global population live in free countries.

The tourism industry sends travellers all over the world and maintains economic relations accordingly. A boycott cannot be the solution - but it is the responsibility, also of small and medium-sized enterprises to act with special care and attention when offering tours to oppressive regimes. This applies where challenging political conditions have existed for years, are just changing or where new destinations and travel markets are emerging.

This webinar will introduce the new printable online publication "Responsible Tourism in Oppressive Regimes – A Guide for Tour Operators to Put People First". It helps tour operators with the complex question of how to offer responsible tourism in politically challenging countries as it guides through the first steps, showcases possible fields of action and offers additional links and resources.

The Roundtable will discuss the idea and elaboration of this guide with Manfred Häupl of Hauser Exkursionen and Ruth Hopfer-Kubsch of Studiosus Reisen München, two pioneers of sustainable and responsible tourism. Both have decades of expertise, also with tours in oppressive regimes, and actively contributed to the publication.

This webinar is explicitly targeted at SME tour operators, product managers and CSR representatives and is intended to

  • Give an overview of the key points to consider
  • Make you understand your impact opportunities
  • Show concrete measures to take action


Manfred Häupl
CEO / COO / Chairman | Hauser Exkursionen GmbH München

Manfred Häupl has been working for Hauser Exkursionen since 1980. In 1991 he took over the company and has since then been the sole owner and CEO. Manfred's worldwide travel experience and product development in the field of trekking, adventure and mountain travel, coupled with the company's development as a CSR-certified and sustainable company, form the focus of his work. Until 2022, he was the chairman of the board of the association for sustainable travel, forum anders Reisen e.V., for 8 years. Hauser Exkursionen is also a founding member of the Roundtable Human Rights in Tourism.


Ruth Hopfer-Kubsch
Quality & Sustainability Manager | Studiosus Reisen München GmbH

Ruth Hopfer-Kubsch is consultant for Quality- and Sustainability Management at Europe’s leading study tour operator Studiosus. She is also head of the Studiosus Foundation e.V., which she helped build up in 2005 as a nonprofit association. With a focus on human rights and social responsibility in tourism, Ruth coordinates in-house social responsibility measures as well as CSR activities in the countries visited by Studiosus groups. She organizes encounters of Studiosus guests with the local population and regular expert panels in which touristic topics are discussed, building bridges between locals and the tourism industry. Ruth is involved in the company’s climate protection measures as well as in activities concerning child protection in tourism. She has been working in the tourism sector for 35 years, and her continued exchange with the local population worldwide has led to a detailed understanding of human rights topics. Studiosus is also a founding member of the Roundtable Human Rights in Tourism.


Katharina Stechl
Program Manager

Katharina works for the multi-stakeholder initiative and non-profit association Roundtable Human Rights in Tourism. After her studies in Tourism Management at the University of Applied Science in Munich, among other jobs, she worked for the “Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit” (GIZ) in India in the field of urban and industrial development. She has profound experience in the areas of international development cooperation and communication/copywriting.

The Roundtable Human Rights in Tourism builds a trusted network of currently 34 tourism stakeholders from six countries. It provides access to expertise, initiates pilot projects and develops learning materials to support the implementation of human rights due diligence in accordance with the UN Guiding Principles within tourism companies, the supply chain and in destinations.