Hardy, Anne, & Leonie J. Pearson (2016, July). Determining sustainable tourism in regions. Sustainability, 8(7), art. 660. (Open Access, doi: 10.3390/su8070660)

Abstract:The goal of achieving sustainable tourism is now a priority for many tourism planners. It has been suggested that stakeholder analysis is an essential step in determining sustainable tourism in regions, given its highly contextual nature. However, previous research has tended to focus heavily on stakeholders with the assumption that attitudes within groups are homogeneous. This research questions this assumption and in doing so, takes a critical approach by examining attitudes towards sustainable tourism and then assesses whether attitudes align with stakeholder groups. The study was conducted in the island state of Tasmania, Australia, and utilised the Q-methodology to examine attitudes towards sustainable tourism in the Bay of Fires region. The results concur with recent research, which shows that attitudes do not always align with those of stakeholder groups. The critical and reflexive approach suggests that assumptions regarding stakeholder attitudes need to be reviewed and more attention given to people’s contextualised attitudes, rather than the stakeholder group in which they sit.

Anne Hardy <anne.hardy@utas.edu.au> is in the School of Business and Economics, University of Tasmania, Australia.

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