Addressing poverty issues in tourism standards: A review of experience (2003)

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The combined forces of industrial globalisation and increased consumer demand for ?sustainably? produced and traded products have resulted in an explosion of voluntary initiatives to demonstrate corporate ?responsibility?. In the last ten years there has been unprecedented growth in the development of environmental and social standards for a number of different industrial sectors. In particular, certification of environmental and social performance is becoming increasingly common in a number of sectors. Certification is now commonplace in forestry and agriculture (particularly with increasing concerns over food production methods and enhanced demand for organic products) but is also emerging in a number of other sectors, including tourism. Within the tourism industry (but not confined to this sector) the majority of standards have focussed on environmental issues, reflecting post- Rio thinking on sustainable development ? although Font and Bendell (2002) note that in developing countries the coverage of social and economic issues is broader. The 7th meeting of the UN Commission for Sustainable Development in 1999 was the first time that poverty issues were specifically highlighted at the international level in relation to tourism development. This paper reviews the extent to which poverty reduction has been addressed in a number of different tourism standards. The remainder of this section describes what a standard is and the different types that exist. Section 2 reviews the different types of tourism standard. Section 3 examines the extent to which poverty issues have been incorporated into a number of recent standards. This part of the paper is based on an analysis of a selection of different tourism principles and codes conducted for ODI in 2002 (De Andrade 2002) and on interviews with managers of a selection of tourism certification schemes in developing countries. The paper concludes with a discussion of the limitations of standards and the potential barriers they present to developing country producers.
Year: 2003
Language: English
In: Pro Poor Tourism PPT Working Paper No. 14,



 Record created 2011-12-21, last modified 2013-01-17