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Special Issue "Developing Tourism in Rural and Agricultural Regions"

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050). This special issue belongs to the section "Sustainability of Culture and Heritage".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 March 2018

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Bruce Prideaux

Centre for Tourism and Regional Opportunities, School of Business and Law, Central Queensland University, Level 3 CQUniversity Square, cnr Abbott and Shields Streets, Cairns QLD 4870, Australia
Website | E-Mail
Interests: sustainable tourism development of natural areas; climate change; remote area tourism; tourism in rural and agricultural regions
Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Michelle Thompson

School of Business and Law, Central Queensland University, Level 3 CQUniversity Square, cnr Abbott and Shields Streets, Cairns QLD 4870, Australia
Website | E-Mail
Interests: agri-tourism; food and wine tourism; tourism in agricultural regions; landscapes; sustainable regional tourism development

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Large scale migration from rural areas to towns and cities over the last hundred years has resulted in the vast majority of people in developed nations living in an urban environment where many have little experience of the countryside. The rapid growth of the tourism industry in recent decades has provided an opportunity for urban dwellers to engage with the countryside and the unique experiences that are offered through rural landscapes, nature, heritage, cultural experiences and gastronomy. Interest in gastronomy is one area that has attracted considerable interest and created demand for unique wine and food experiences.

From a research perspective, there has been growing interest in wine, gastronomy more generally and agritourism. There has been rather less research into issues associated with the long-term sustainability of tourism in rural and agricultural regions and how understanding of this type may assist communities that have developed or are seeking to develop a tourism sector.

This Special Issue focuses on issues related to the long-term sustainable development of tourism activity in rural and agricultural regions. We invite you to contribute sumissions on issues related to the long-term sustainability of tourism in rural communities including: strategies for sustainable development; threats to sustainable develoment; development of sustainable tourism experiences; gastronomy; potential impacts of climate change; barriers to sustainable development; modelling of tourism development; and case studies.

Prof. Dr. Bruce Prideaux
Prof. Dr. Michelle Thompson
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sustainability is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • rural tourism
  • agritourism
  • rural tourism experiences
  • food tourism
  • barriers
  • climate change
  • tourism sustainability

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle Oleotourism as a Sustainable Product: An Analysis of Its Demand in the South of Spain (Andalusia)
Sustainability 2018, 10(1), 101; doi:10.3390/su10010101
Received: 17 November 2017 / Revised: 22 December 2017 / Accepted: 1 January 2018 / Published: 3 January 2018
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Abstract
Olive oil has generated a new tourism offer in Spain called oleotourism. Visitors can enjoy landscapes of ancient olive groves and visit its oil mills called almazaras, to learn about its manufacture and to taste different oil varieties. Andalusia, located in the south
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Olive oil has generated a new tourism offer in Spain called oleotourism. Visitors can enjoy landscapes of ancient olive groves and visit its oil mills called almazaras, to learn about its manufacture and to taste different oil varieties. Andalusia, located in the south of Spain, produces 60% of Spain’s olive oil, having the largest number of almazaras, and therefore most oleotourism offers. This differentiated tourism offer requires identifying the profile of oleotourists to determine sustainable strategies to increase demand without harming the local community. The objective of this study is to identify the Andalusian oleotourism offer according to the profile of oleotourists and project its demand evolution, in order to offer a sustainable product best suited to the demand. With this aim, three techniques are applied in this study: a random survey addressed to oleotourists in Andalusia, a SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats) analysis to evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of the oleotourism sector in the region, and finally, its demand is projected by using the ARIMA (autoregressive integrated moving average) model. The results indicate a favorable future scenario that should induce entrepreneurs and local authorities to invest in promoting and developing a product. Oleotourism is an alternative that can serve as a complement to agricultural income and generate employment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Developing Tourism in Rural and Agricultural Regions)
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Open AccessArticle Spatial Analysis of the Distribution of Small Businesses in the Eastern Villages of Gilan Province with Emphasis on the Tourism Sector in Mountainous Regions
Sustainability 2017, 9(12), 2238; doi:10.3390/su9122238
Received: 29 August 2017 / Revised: 21 November 2017 / Accepted: 30 November 2017 / Published: 4 December 2017
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Abstract
The development of small businesses in rural areas as a key strategy for sustaining the population and improving the quality of life of villagers has always been a concern for many developed and developing countries. Some rural areas provide their villagers with favorable
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The development of small businesses in rural areas as a key strategy for sustaining the population and improving the quality of life of villagers has always been a concern for many developed and developing countries. Some rural areas provide their villagers with favorable conditions for the development of businesses in order to enjoy the potential in the field of tourism. Sustainable development in these areas can be achieved with systematic attention and planning. In the present work, the spatial analysis of the distribution of small businesses in the eastern parts of Gilan Province was studied with an emphasis on tourism in mountainous regions. The study population consisted of all villages in the east part of Gilan Province, and the sample included all businesses officially supported by the Omid Entrepreneurship Fund. The research method was a descriptive analytic in which GIS software and the G statistic were used for the analysis of spatial correlation, clustering, hot and cold spots analysis and buffer zones. Finally, the results of the study showed that the spatial distribution of businesses in different economic sectors (agriculture, industry, services and tourism) were different between 2011 and 2016 in the way the cluster pattern was formed in agricultural and service activities. A cluster pattern cannot be considered in the tourism and industrial activities, but there is a random (point) pattern; in this regard, the results indicate the importance of the factor of distance between the village and the city center in the distribution of tourism businesses. In addition, the highest levels of support for businesses were in the agricultural and services sectors, while the lowest support was in industry and tourism. Finally, the results showed that the distribution of businesses in all activities was much higher in the plains and valleys as compared to the mountainous and hill areas. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Developing Tourism in Rural and Agricultural Regions)
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Open AccessArticle DMOs and Rural Tourism: A Stakeholder Analysis the Case of Tucker County, West Virginia
Sustainability 2017, 9(10), 1813; doi:10.3390/su9101813
Received: 31 August 2017 / Revised: 22 September 2017 / Accepted: 26 September 2017 / Published: 10 October 2017
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Abstract
Rural destination management organizations (DMOs) are faced with considerable challenges as they attempt to promote economic prosperity through tourism. This study sought to identify rural destination management challenges in Tucker County, West Virginia; identify the roles and activities of the destinations DMOs in
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Rural destination management organizations (DMOs) are faced with considerable challenges as they attempt to promote economic prosperity through tourism. This study sought to identify rural destination management challenges in Tucker County, West Virginia; identify the roles and activities of the destinations DMOs in addressing these challenges; and develop a perceived destination management framework. DMO challenges include maintaining authenticity and sense of place; economic diversification; seasonality, low wage jobs, and lack of employees; connecting resorts to small businesses and communities; and establishing a common vision, identity, and coordination of activities. While the majority of tourism literature calls for DMOs to play a dual marketing and management role, this paper makes an important contribution by identifying the need for a Convention and Visitors Bureau and a separate organization with a specific mission to sustainably develop and manage tourism and coordinate activities of the stakeholder network. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Developing Tourism in Rural and Agricultural Regions)
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Open AccessArticle Long-Term Sustainable Development of Tourism in South Tyrol: An Analysis of Tourists’ Perception
Sustainability 2017, 9(10), 1791; doi:10.3390/su9101791
Received: 3 September 2017 / Revised: 30 September 2017 / Accepted: 1 October 2017 / Published: 3 October 2017
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Abstract
Although sustainable tourism concepts are gaining in importance everywhere, related research is quite fragmented with many studies concentrating on environmental sustainability. Seeking to contribute to the general discussion, we first examine the perceptions of sustainability among tourists using a best–worst scaling method applied
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Although sustainable tourism concepts are gaining in importance everywhere, related research is quite fragmented with many studies concentrating on environmental sustainability. Seeking to contribute to the general discussion, we first examine the perceptions of sustainability among tourists using a best–worst scaling method applied to important aspects of sustainable tourism. Our results show that experiencing nature in an intense and profound way is considered the most important aspect of sustainable tourism whereas grappling with the culture of the host region is perceived as the least important aspect of sustainable tourism in our sample. Second, we analyze if socio-demographic and/or other factors have significant implications for the propensity to increase expenditures for sustainable holiday offers. Applying a simple regression model, we can show that age has a significant and positive impact on the propensity to spend more on a sustainable holiday offer such as overnight stays in an accommodation that is carbon-neutral. Other socio-demographic variables such as gender, education, and income are not significant. Moreover, hotel stars and average expenditures per person per night are significant and have a positive effect on the propensity to spend more on carbon-neutral housing. Two simple policy implications can be drawn: (1) sustainable tourism experiences should prioritize landscape and natural beauty; and (2) sustainable tourism offers are best suited for higher-priced and/or higher starred hotels. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Developing Tourism in Rural and Agricultural Regions)
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Open AccessArticle A Conceptual Framework for Agri-Food Tourism as an Eco-Innovation Strategy in Small Farms
Sustainability 2017, 9(10), 1683; doi:10.3390/su9101683
Received: 16 July 2017 / Revised: 21 August 2017 / Accepted: 21 August 2017 / Published: 21 September 2017
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Abstract
The proposed conceptual framework explores how small-scale farms can combine agricultural products and tourism into an eco-innovation strategy. This paper presents a case study conducted on a family-run farm within the territory of the Paiwan tribal community of the North Dawu Mountain situated
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The proposed conceptual framework explores how small-scale farms can combine agricultural products and tourism into an eco-innovation strategy. This paper presents a case study conducted on a family-run farm within the territory of the Paiwan tribal community of the North Dawu Mountain situated in the Central Mountain Range of Taiwan. The area has become an important coffee-farming region since the Japanese colonial period between 1895 and 1945. For many years, most of the indigenous farmers of the area have cultivated varieties of coffee plants using traditional, non-commercial methods, such as a single-sale channel. The small-scale farmer implements an integrated approach that systematically optimizes supply chain relationships to improve both the upstream and downstream sides of agri-food tourism services. The upstream element of agri-food tourism, for example, can be adjusted to employ organic or “natural” farming methods that allow small-scale farmers to secure an “organic” certification. Based on this approach, a small farm is gradually transformed into a type of educational institution that can demonstrate to customers the methods for farming high-quality organic coffee while also attracting tourists of various backgrounds to experience the downstream components of agri-food tourism in a recreational setting. This case study highlights how a particular small-scale farmer plays an important role in attracting other tribal farmers to engage in sustainable practices that help preserve cultural, social, and environmental systems while also presenting agri-food tourism as a brand identity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Developing Tourism in Rural and Agricultural Regions)
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Open AccessArticle Unlocking Value Creation Using an Agritourism Business Model
Sustainability 2017, 9(9), 1618; doi:10.3390/su9091618
Received: 28 July 2017 / Revised: 22 August 2017 / Accepted: 24 August 2017 / Published: 12 September 2017
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (277 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Agritourism has achieved a greater importance in the last decade, but despite this relevance, the definition is not aligned everywhere, depending on the contingency variables of the context in which agritourism is located. This paper aims at analyzing the business model’s key success
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Agritourism has achieved a greater importance in the last decade, but despite this relevance, the definition is not aligned everywhere, depending on the contingency variables of the context in which agritourism is located. This paper aims at analyzing the business model’s key success factors of Italian agritourism by studying their structural, social and economic features, integrated with a sustainability approach. The empirical analysis is based on a sample of agritourism, located in an Italian region. The empirical results show relevant and useful elements to support the sustainable development of agritourism business models in Italy, linking theory, policy and practices. Indeed, these results, together with others related to the economic dimension of the farms, their specialization, and the characteristics of the farmers make it possible to argue that there are common elements, which offer potential for agritourism. In addition, it was possible to identify two different models of agritourism. Agritourism can open new horizons in rural sustainable development, with possible beneficial effects on the environment, society, agricultural heritage and economic growth. In particular, regional policy developers should take into consideration these elements in order to direct correctly efforts. The research shows also some interesting theoretical implications as it contributes to enrich the literature on this particular kind of business model. At the same time, it helps family owners to increase the overall understanding of their agritourism, in order to finalize adequate planning and communication. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Developing Tourism in Rural and Agricultural Regions)
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