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Sustainable Tourism by Dr. Jess Ponting
Global Basecamps is sponsoring a video series on sustainable tourism. In the first video, Dr. Jess Ponting walks viewers through the basic concepts of sustainable tourism. Dr. Ponting is a professor at San Diego State University. He specializes in the use of sustainable tourism for community development. His areas of interest include sustainable tourism, surfing tourism, volunteer tourism, cross cultural interactions in tourism, and the social construction of tourist spaces. Currently he is researching peak experiences in surfing tourism, the interface between traditional systems of reef resource ownership and sustainable marine tourism in the Pacific Islands, and much more involving sustainable tourism.
Additionally, Dr Ponting is developing the world’s first Center for Surf Research (CSR) at San Diego State University. The CSR is a non-profit research and teaching organization that will lead surf tourism to a more sustainable path by:
- Generating, and disseminating specialist knowledge to governments, the surf industry, tourism developers, destination communities, non-profits, and tourists;
- Shaping responsible global citizens through life-changing experiential learning opportunities for students and the wider community;
- Inspiring, encouraging, and facilitating active stakeholder engagement with the social and economic development of destination communities, sustainable use of their resources, and conservation of their critical environments
Sustainable tourism in simple terms is tourism that does not deplete economic, social/cultural and environmental resources. The ultimate goals of sustainable tourism are to provide a high-quality experience for the visitors, strengthen the host cultures and communities, and to develop tourism-related livelihoods while preserving the surrounding environment. Sustainable tourism is widely considered to be the fastest growing segment of the world’s largest industry.
There are three main aspects of sustainable tourism which include economical, social/cultural, and environmental. Economical sustainability refers to the economic practices that have sustainable impact on the local community. A sustainable tourism business allows economic base in the local community, creates employment for the local people, and benefits the local industries and businesses that compromise and supply the tourism industry. Social/cultural sustainability focuses on trying to minimize the negative impacts of tourism on the local communities while also trying to support social and cultural(norms – integrity). Environmental sustainability positively contributes to the quality of its surroundings ecological and natural environment.