Special Issue "Sustainable Island Tourism"
Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (1 October 2021) | Viewed by 10867
Tourism has become of major economic and, therefore, social and environmental significance to islands around the world. Tourism does not just provide employment; its adoption usefully sidesteps some common island problems. Visitors boost demand, assisting economies of scale for everything from goods to transport services. A tourist economy is not constrained by the limitations of on-island capacities: tourists bring money from elsewhere and spend it on goods and services whilst on the island. Some goods may even be brought in on the very planes or ships that deliver the visitors, and thus the island might just be the stage on which transactions are performed. To the tourist, the fact that islands sit apart engenders mystery and romance, positive feelings, and even paradisical associations. ‘Paradise’ and ‘island’ are words put together even in inappropriate settings, as with newspaper headlines in 2011, when 69 young people were slaughtered on the ‘paradise island’ of Utøya in a cold Norwegian lake. ‘Treasure island’ is another common phrase; how fortunate that Robert Louis Stevenson changed the novel’s original title from ‘The sea cook’. ‘The man who loved islands’ could be a tag applied to more than just D.H. Lawrence’s hero, and it is significant that when that man abandoned his first island, there were plans to turn it into a tourist resort.
Islands seek tourists, and tourists value islands, in seemingly a perfect symbiosis. However, there are tensions within such a relationship. Tourism, particularly mass tourism, can become a burden to both the environment and society. Islands are bounded, many being without wilderness or frontier regions, and the development of tourist facilities might require the sacrifice of limited, perhaps cherished, open space, or pre-existing land uses might succumb to tourist demands. Tourists need water and power, and they produce wastes, from packaging to sewage; thus, bounded island systems might struggle to provide the utilities or cope with the waste. Island cultures, perhaps including language and social traditions, might be challenged by a deluge of visitors, some of whom might not conform to local norms through disinclination or ignorance. Issues of sustainability relating to tourism’s impact on fragile insular systems may (or may not) be eased by ecotourism. Another aspect of sustainability relates to islands striving to hold on to their share of the tourism market in what is a fickle industry; fashions for destinations readily change. Tourism to islands, as elsewhere, can also be affected by strife and by economic downturns, such as the financial crisis of 2008 and now that caused by the coronavirus pandemic. This Special Issue of Sustainability seeks to explore sustainable tourism within island settings. Papers are invited that cover sustainable island tourism in general or theoretical terms or that deal with aspects of the issue relating to specific island settings.
Dr. Stephen Royle
Manuscript Submission Information
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