A reconceptualisation of destination tourism management: focussing on sustainability and corporate social responsibility
This research proposal is in an early stage of development. Investigating the linkages between corporate social responsibility (CSR) and the business strategies of tourism destination businesses offers the prospect of new perspectives on the management of sustainable tourism. Previous tourism management discussion has been dominated by research into tourist perceptions and joint government and industry planning processes for addressing physical and social impacts of tourism. And although there has been some discussion of the ethical and CSR aspects of tourism there has been a notable lack of empirical research. Sustainable management of tourism operations seeks a balance of economic, social and environmental considerations. And even with widespread concern about social and environmental impacts, economic business drivers continue to dominate management thinking. The tensions caused by differing perceptions of sustainability and expectations of sustainable the industry stakeholders in the face of steady growth in tourist numbers, indicates the need for further research. The application of a CSR lens could provide useful insights in this domain. The conflicting perceptions of sustainability are held by business strategists, economists, planners and ecologists invite investigation. The conceptualisation of sustainable business embraces continuing and sustainable business performance, while the concept of sustainable development supports development which generates long term and equitable social and environmental and economic outcomes which outweigh any negative factors. Sustainable tourism is generally conceived as an industry objective rather that a strictly defined concept and it is seen to be broadly in accord with the concept of sustainable development. Tourism management literature indicates that effective resolution of the conflicting objectives of destination stakeholders requires constructive long term cooperation between tourism operators, government and local communities. Adding the requirement of sustainability to the formula produces a range of new demands. Although there has also been considerable research into the cooperation between tourism groups, government and communities, relatively few examine the challenge of balancing business management philosophies and practices with the objective of achieving sustainable tourism. A special problem in sustainable tourism is the challenge of long term management of visitor activity in protected natural areas (PNAs) or national parks. Hoped for outcomes from this research are: An extended understanding of how stakeholders cooperate, or fail to cooperate, in the management of common pool resources in the form of PNAs. An understanding of the ethical bases for management strategies could provide new insights in the sustainable management of tourism destinations.
Conference: Otago Business PhD Colloquium, Otago, New Zealand
Keywords: corporate social responsibility; business strategies of tourism destination; management of sustainable tourism; sustainable business,
Research Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)