Coastal tourism in New Zealand: a challenge for local culture in a changing era?

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Tourism sustainability is based on its ability to represent local culture and being beneficial for the community. This paper deals with this topic through investigating the relationship between coastal tourism activities and local communities in five case study areas in New Zealand and comparing them according to sustainable tourism indicators. Data were collected and analysed using mixed method research approach through A) Case study visits and literature review to identify the tourism system characteristics and connecting them with theoretical tourism models such as McKercher’s chaos models. B) Semi-structured interviews were conducted with local community representatives to get their perception on the effect of coastal tourism activities on their culture and tourism strategies implementation. The results showed that the lack of regional tourism strategies leads to weakening of the institutional structure managing coastal tourism activities in New Zealand causing fragmentation in the responsibilities of different agencies. Local and iwi community representatives express their dissatisfaction of the planning for tourism, its negative effects on their culture and lack of job opportunities in tourism. However, they appreciate the efforts made by some governmental authorities such as MfE, DOC and some local councils in protecting coastal tourism environmental assets and their cultural heritage. The study recommends formulation of updated tourism strategies on the regional level connected with New Zealand tourism vision 2025, enhancement of community participation through using adaptive management approach, incorporating local iwi culture in tourism activities and increasing tourism job opportunities for local community members to achieve sustainable tourism outcomes.
Book of proceedings: Annual AESOP Congress, Definite Space – Fuzzy Responsibility, Prague, 13-16th July, 2015
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