Environmental change, resilience and tourism: definitions and frameworks

Alan A. Lew, Joseph Martin Cheer

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The repercussions of global warming and changeable weather patterns such as El Nino on many of the world's coral reefs, as exemplified by Australia's Great Barrier Reef, demonstrate significant local-level effects of environmental change that are potentially severe for tourism communities. The experience of natural environments has probably always been a motivation for leisure, recreation, education and other forms of touristic travel. In response, tourism industries have become prominent in places that have the kinds of natural resources that people associate with their travel and tourism needs. All places experience environmental changes that sometimes occur fast and unexpected, and at other times are slow and almost imperceptible. These changes have the potential to impact all residents and all economic sectors in a place. Some types of environmental changes, however, may impact tourism more than other economic sectors. Social-ecological resilience theory applies a systems approach understanding to how communities as integrated social and environment entities respond to change.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationTourism Resilience and Adaptation to Environmental Change
Subtitle of host publicationDefinitions and Frameworks
EditorsAlan A Lew, Joseph M. Cheer
Place of PublicationAbingdon Oxon UK
Number of pages10
ISBN (Electronic)9781315463971
ISBN (Print)9781138206793
Publication statusPublished - 2018


  • tourism
  • resilience
  • environmental change

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