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Progress and Prospects for Tourism Footprint Research

Institute of Mountain Hazards and Environment, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Chengdu 610041, China
Institute of Territovial Economic, Shaanxi University of Technology, Hanzhong 723000, China
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sustainability 2017, 9(10), 1847;
Received: 31 August 2017 / Revised: 11 October 2017 / Accepted: 12 October 2017 / Published: 15 October 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Carbon Footprint: As an Environmental Sustainability Indicator)
PDF [242 KB, uploaded 15 October 2017]


The tourism footprint family comprises the tourism ecological footprint (TEF), the tourism carbon footprint (TCF) and the tourism water footprint (TWF). The tourism footprint represents an important tool for quantitatively assessing the impact of tourism activities on the ecosystem of a tourist destination. This paper systematically reviews the relevant literature on TEF, TCF and TWF, analyses and summarizes the main progress and failures in the analytical frameworks, research methods, measurement results, environmental impacts and reductions in the tourism footprint. This paper also proposes areas for further developing the tourism footprint research, including unifying the analytical frameworks and boundaries of the tourism footprint, distinguishing the geographical scope of the tourism footprint effectively, improving the process of analyzing the environmental impact of the tourism footprint, measuring the tourism footprint scientifically and roundly, performing space-time calculations of the tourism footprint, and expanding the tourism footprint family by introducing new members. Accordingly, this paper is devoted to the continued study of the tourism footprint. View Full-Text
Keywords: tourism ecological footprint; tourism carbon footprint; tourism water footprint; research review; research prospect tourism ecological footprint; tourism carbon footprint; tourism water footprint; research review; research prospect
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Wang, S.; Hu, Y.; He, H.; Wang, G. Progress and Prospects for Tourism Footprint Research. Sustainability 2017, 9, 1847.

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