About the project

The Cultural Tourism Research Programme was launched in 1991, with the support of DGXXIII (now part of the Enterprise Directorate) of the European Commission. The research focused originally on visitors to cultural attractions in the European Union, but the scope of the research has has now broadened into a global study of cultural tourism.

 The original aims of the research programme were to:

  • devise definitions of the nature and scope of cultural tourism;

  • collect data on cultural tourism visits to European attractions;

  • assess the profile and motivations of cultural tourists;

  • develop case studies of cultural tourism management.

For nearly 20 years, the ATLAS project has continued collecting and disseminating information on cultural tourism. Sevem waves of consumer research have been undertaken, yielding over 40,000 interviews and surveys on cultural tourism market trends and tourist behaviour. The ATLAS Cultural Tourism Research Project currently has 25 participating institutions from Europe, Asia, Australasia and North America.  The research programme runs continuously, allowing members to undertake their research when it suits them. The survey works with a modular questionnaire system, which allows participants to introduce their own questions and to decide the length of questionnaire they use.

At the ATLAS Annual Conference in Cyprus in November 2010 it was decided to maintain and epxand the modular survey system to provide a wider coverage of cultural tourism topics for participants.

Already a member?

You can download all the information you need from this site, including questionnaires in different languages, site information forms and survey guidelines. If you have any other questions, please contact Greg Richards.

How can I participate?

If you are nor currently a member of the project, you can still join us. The project is open to all those willing to participate and exchange survey data with members of Cultural Tourism Research Group, whether or not they are members of ATLAS. To join, please email Greg Richards  (

Please note that the use of the materials on this site is limited to participating project members only.




Survey Instruments

Project Reports




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