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Utveckling, tredje världen och turism - en studie av Ecuadors ekoturism - ideal och verklighet
2003 (Swedish)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor)Student thesis
Abstract [en]

The initiative for this study sprung from various tourism experiences and a fascination of the Ecuadorian geography that I gained during a previous year as a volunteer in the country. This study was set to seek the answers to the following questions: 1. What is the current state of ecotourism in Ecuador? 2. Which are the goals and ambitions of the Ecuadorian ecotourism entrepreneurs? 3. Are these goals realised and do they have any real effect on the environment and the communities? To answer these questions a “face-to-face” interview method was used on ecotourism producers and consultants in addition to some direct observations at ecotourism sites. The human focus of the study is apparent as it is carried out in close conjunction to the investigated object. The study also has a touch of phenomenology, since it is based on primary data, which is used to explain, rather than to understand the reality. Furthermore, the understanding of the individual was emphasised, instead of using theories to reach more universal conclusions. The respondent’s values and attitudes are at the centre of attention, which makes the study existentialistic. The study is descriptive, since it mostly answers questions about “when?” and “how?” instead of investigating the basic reasons for the current state of the ecotourism. As this research has been done on the basis of random sampling, the result can only be seen as an example of the existing diversity. Qualitative data, so called “soft data”, was used to make up the content of this study. Interviews, observations, newly written material and newly updated websites were used to create as current of a picture of the ecotourism discourse as possible. The theoretical base for this essay is partly founded in earlier ideas about development but also on newer alternate development theories from the seventies, incorporating sustainable development and self reliance. To this, the origin and essence of ecotourism is added, as well as data concerning the general economic, social, cultural and ecological impact of tourism. These themes combined create a discussion around tourism and ecotourism in developing countries, the so called “third world”. The main characters of this essay are therefore the interviewed members of the Ecuadorian ecotourism association. They contributed with their views of ecotourism and subjective descriptions of their own activities. Their activities, vastly spread with regards to content, geographical situation and business experience, together creates a pattern of the Ecuadorian ecotourism. All contributors have different ambitions and goals but they share a common desire to save a certain environment or culture and to spread the spirit of ecotourism. Drawing on this study it is possible to conclude that the ecological sustainability of the ecotourism projects can be improved. For instance, environmentally sound transportation to the tourism facilities, which are usually far from the civilisation, was identified as a problem. However, most of the projects were successful in terms of engagement of local people and communities. Ecuadorian ecotourism is more often centred on the local human being than the local environment. Another indication of the focus on the local people is the fact that the concerned communities are usually highly aware that they can claim part of the profit. Profit chairing is also practised at different rates throughout the country. The Ecuadorian Association of Ecotourism (ASEC) is currently pushing for a quality certification system for ecotourism in Ecuador. If this proves successful in reality it is believed that the general awareness regarding ecotourism will increase and that the goals of the individual ecotourism association members will be easier to realise.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2003. , 68 p.
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-53326Local ID: KUG C-18OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kau-53326DiVA: diva2:1101879
Subject / course
Human Geography
Available from: 2017-05-29 Created: 2017-05-29

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Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
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  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf