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Tourism – as exploration and demonstration of which sustainable development? The case of a biosphere reserve
Karlstad University, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (starting 2013), Department of Geography, Media and Communication (from 2013).ORCID iD: 0000-0001-6760-4384
Karlstad University, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (starting 2013), Department of Geography, Media and Communication (from 2013).ORCID iD: 0000-0002-5834-9518
2018 (English)In: Tourism, ISSN 1332-7461, Vol. 66, no 2, p. 161-176Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

 In contrast to traditional nature protection strategies, UNESCO's Man and Biosphere Reserves (BRs) can be seen as a more pronounced perspective that includes nature, culture and sustainable development. Tourism is generally supported in BRs, which also are meant to function as "learning sites of excellence to explore and demonstrate approaches to conservation and sustainable development" (UNESCO, 1996 p. 16). The focus of BRs has centred on environmental sustainability, due to the concept's history in nature preservation. However, like all global concepts, the interpretation of sustainable development in BRs is filtered over time through national, regional and local conditions. Explicit or underlying development strategies are also in place when the concept is applied in practice. It is therefore important to gain a better understanding of how sustainable development is interpreted and how BR stakeholders see the role of tourism over time. It is against this background that a case study was carried out on the Lake Vänern Archipelago BR in Sweden, its tourism aspects and the interpretation of sustainable development. The findings illustrate an ambivalence with regard to which approach to sustainable development is preferred, but there are striking parallels between the evolution of environmental commitment during the 20th century and the changing profile of BRs in general. Further, it can be noted that studying concrete examples of situated cases of sustainable development efforts in terms of biosphere reserves can contribute greatly to the ongoing discussion about which development approaches are seen as more or less sustainable.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Zagreb: Institut za turizam , 2018. Vol. 66, no 2, p. 161-176
Keywords [en]
biosphere reserves, tourism, nature-based tourism, sustainable development, Sweden
National Category
Social and Economic Geography
Research subject
Turismvetenskap
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-68501ISI: 000437523600004OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kau-68501DiVA, id: diva2:1231562
Available from: 2018-07-07 Created: 2018-07-07 Last updated: 2018-08-30Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Sustainable development and tourism in a biosphere reserve: A case study of Lake Vänern Archipelago Biosphere Reserve, Sweden
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Sustainable development and tourism in a biosphere reserve: A case study of Lake Vänern Archipelago Biosphere Reserve, Sweden
2018 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

In this thesis I analyse sustainable development by researching tourism in a biosphere reserve. Sustainable development is based on a broad range of environmental, economic and social elements, bound together by the fact that development is limited by boundaries in the environment. Studies on tourism have the potential to contribute to sustainable development by changing environmental awareness, by promoting a way of life that reduces environmental impact, and by suggesting sustainable lifestyle changes. It is this aspect of sustainable development that I have addressed, as a contribution to the knowledge base, via the example of tourism development in biosphere reserves. Exploring the complex interaction between sustainable development and tourism in a biosphere reserve provides the added value of a case study in which sustainable development is central and actively promoted, as biosphere reserves are meant to be learning sites for sustainability. By incorporating and highlighting a theoretical foundation, consisting of relational place, substantive landscape and sustainable development, this study included analysis of a selection of concrete tourism-related features, activities and actors, all of which influence sustainable development. Consequently, the main research question of this study was: How is tourism mobilised by different actors to attain and promote sustainable development in a biosphere reserve?

This thesis shows that that sustainable development is a spatial relation, and something that we make together with other people, and that tourism, under certain circumstances, has the potential to contribute to sustainable development. My research on the mobilisation of tourism for sustainability in biosphere reserves in general, and Lake Vänern Archipelago Biosphere Reserve in particular, has highlighted several theoretical and empirical findings that contribute to our increased understanding of how sustainable development works.

 

Abstract [en]

Contemporary society has gone through comprehensive changes over the last century, and now faces growing global problems and crises, including increased globalisation and mobility, the exploitation of nature and people, growing environmental problems and climate change. These problems have brought about discussions on sustainable development as an expression of how to begin tackling some of the large-scale problems originating from modern society.

One way to counter the societal problems of implementing sustainable development was initiated by UNESCO in establishing biosphere reserves. These reserves are meant to be learning sites for sustainable development, and often include tourism as a means of becoming more sustainable. Tourism is an expression of how society operates, and therefore problems in society, such as a lack of sustainability, are reflected in, and amplified by, tourism.

The aim of this study was to contribute to a more comprehensive understanding of sustainable development by researching tourism in a biosphere reserve. Findings suggest that sustainable development is a spatial relation, and something that we make together with other people, and that tourism, under certain circumstances, has the potential to contribute to sustainable development.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Karlstads universitet, 2018. p. 148
Series
Karlstad University Studies, ISSN 1403-8099 ; 2018:34
Keywords
Sustainable Development, Sustainable Tourism, Biosphere Reserves, Place, Landscape
National Category
Human Geography
Research subject
Human Geography
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-68691 (URN)978-91-7063-868-8 (ISBN)978-91-7063-963-0 (ISBN)
Public defence
2018-09-21, 11D 227, Erlandersalen, Karlstad, 10:15 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note

Artikel 4 ingick som manuskript i avhandlingen, nu publicerad

Available from: 2018-09-04 Created: 2018-08-10 Last updated: 2019-06-13Bibliographically approved

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