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Sustainability 2018, 10(1), 54; doi:10.3390/su10010054

Tourism as an Approach to Sustainable Rural Development in Post-Socialist Countries: A Comparative Study of Serbia and Slovenia

1
Geographical Institute “Jovan Cvijić” SASA, Djure Jakšića 9, 11000 Belgrade, Serbia
2
Institute of Sports, Tourism and Service, South Ural State University, 76 Lenin Avenue, Chelyabinsk 454080, Russia
3
Novi Sad Business School, Vladimira Perića Valtera 4, 21000 Novi Sad, Serbia
4
Department for Finance, St. Petersburg School of Economics and Management, National Research University Higher School of Economics, Kantemirovskaya St. 3A, Office 331, Sankt Petersburg 194100, Russia
5
Faculty of Geography, University of Belgrade, Studentski trg 3/III, 11000 Belgrade, Serbia
6
Graduate School of Economics and Management, The Ural Federal University Named after the First President of Russia B. N. Yeltsin, 19 Mira St., Yekaterinburg 620002, Russia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 2 December 2017 / Revised: 20 December 2017 / Accepted: 24 December 2017 / Published: 28 December 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Ecology and Forest Management)
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Abstract

The research deals with the sustainable development of the Serbian and Slovenian countryside, under the influence of tourism progress. The article identifies the main rural tourism competitiveness in Serbia and Slovenia, as one of the essential factors of rural development in both countries, analyzing the main contributions and making a series of proposals to guide the future research agenda. The aim of the paper is to clarify around one obviously defined objective—to point out the competitiveness of sustainable rural tourism in typical post-socialist settings. The data for this study were collected using the Integrated Model of Destination Competitiveness to observe Serbian and Slovenian competitiveness in tourism. Determinants were assessed using a survey evaluating four demanding factors and 20 supporting factors, based upon a five-point Likert Scale. The results indicated that the friendliness of residents towards visitors, easy communication between them, together with quality of infrastructure and health facilities show the highest level of statistical correlation. These are the main propositions to start an initiative for the authorities in local communities to actively participate in sustainable rural development. The findings provide tourism stakeholders with relevant respondents’ perceptions pertaining to the tourism development in non-urban areas. View Full-Text
Keywords: countryside’s development; sustainable tourism; competitiveness; transitional societies; rural economy countryside’s development; sustainable tourism; competitiveness; transitional societies; rural economy
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Petrović, M.D.; Vujko, A.; Gajić, T.; Vuković, D.B.; Radovanović, M.; Jovanović, J.M.; Vuković, N. Tourism as an Approach to Sustainable Rural Development in Post-Socialist Countries: A Comparative Study of Serbia and Slovenia. Sustainability 2018, 10, 54.

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