Next Article in Journal
Social Sustainability Assessment in Livestock Production: A Social Life Cycle Assessment Approach
Previous Article in Journal
How Do Mobility Direction and Human Assets of Mobile Engineers Affect Joint Knowledge Creation after M&As?
Previous Article in Special Issue
Agritourism: A Hedonic Approach of Quality Tourism Indicators in South Tyrol
Open AccessArticle

Agritourism Initiatives in the Context of Continuous Out-Migration: Comparative Perspectives for the Alps and Chinese Mountain Regions

1
Federal Institute of Agricultural Economics, Rural and Mountain Research, 1030 Vienna, Austria
2
Water and Eco Crisis Foundation, San Jose, CA 95014, USA
3
Bijie Pilot Area Research Institute, Guizhou University of Engineering Science, Guizhou 551700, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sustainability 2019, 11(16), 4418; https://doi.org/10.3390/su11164418
Received: 29 April 2019 / Revised: 17 July 2019 / Accepted: 12 August 2019 / Published: 15 August 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Agritourism in Mountain Regions)
After World War II, the economic recovery of Western Europe implied a swift economic transition for all regions, including the area of the Alps, although affecting various parts at different paces and stages. The resulting out-migration led to population decline in some mountain valleys and regions since the 1950s. Such negative population development trends are widespread across mountain areas of the world, including China, where out-migration started after its rural reform in the 1970s. The effect was in some cases even more significant than in the Alps, with the first villages being deserted in the 1980s. Current estimations report about 380,000 rural villages in China being abandoned between 2000–2016, particularly in its mountain regions. While lower population densities might alleviate the pressures on ecology and contribute to environmental benefits, these movements aggravate a spiraling-down process of local economies and culture. In the Alps, many regions that were facing challenges of out-migration and economic weaknesses focused on local initiatives, including agritourism schemes that provided both economic incentives and stability to involved mountain farmers, and the continuation of local land management systems. However, China’s interest for promoting rural action and tourism-oriented farm diversification only started more recently, with a range of rural tourism and agricultural tourism initiatives emerging. This paper focuses on lessons from successful initiatives in the Alps that might induce and strengthen China’s search for elaborating agritourism activities in mountain areas. In consequence, agritourism might be assessed as a contribution to mitigate out-migration from mountain regions and a core element of the future sustainable development of the Alps and the Chinese countryside. View Full-Text
Keywords: definition of agritourism; comparative studies; rural development; sustainable tourism; mountain development; Alpine regions; Chinese mountains definition of agritourism; comparative studies; rural development; sustainable tourism; mountain development; Alpine regions; Chinese mountains
MDPI and ACS Style

Dax, T.; Zhang, D.; Chen, Y. Agritourism Initiatives in the Context of Continuous Out-Migration: Comparative Perspectives for the Alps and Chinese Mountain Regions. Sustainability 2019, 11, 4418.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats
Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Access Map

1
Sustainability, EISSN 2071-1050, Published by MDPI AG
Back to TopTop