With CBT-IRDC, CBT-I analyzes results and make lessons learned more widely available to academics, development practitioners and the industry. Beyond this, the Centre serves as a platform for academics and practitioners to share, collaborate, and educate on tourism, sustainable development and community benefits.’ – Potjana Suansri, director Thailand Community-Based Tourism Institute (CBT-I)

In 2011, the Thailand Community Based Tourism – Institute and Payap University established the CBT-IRDC. There were many reasons to start this unique collaboration. The first and foremost reason was (and still is) the need for more applied research on tourism, sustainability and benefits to local communities in the Asia Economic knowledge gained in Thailand and other Asian countries on tourism and community benefits to other countries in Southeast Asia. Secondly, the opportunities of the Center to contribute to the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) tourism strategic framework and the AEC tourism master plan framework.

CBT-IRDC aims to be recognized as a leading Asian regional knowledge center, providing applied research and education at the intersection of tourism, development, sustainability, and communities. CBT-IRDC is a professional expert organization belonging to CBT-I and Payap University with a clear profile, research portfolio, and funding sources. 

Its focus lies on action-oriented research projects, and providing short courses and a Bachelor course on tourism, sustainability and community development. The Center not only strengthens research capacity but also facilitates knowledge development and sharing among practitioners leading to valuable results for the tourism industry and communities.