Table of Contents

International Handbook on Ecotourism

International Handbook on Ecotourism

Elgar original reference

Edited by Roy Ballantyne and Jan Packer

This Handbook brings together contributions from over forty international experts in the field of ecotourism. It provides a critical review and discussion of current issues and concepts – it challenges readers to consider the boundaries of what ecotourism is, and could be. The Handbook provides practical information regarding the business of ecotourism; insights into ecotourist behaviour and visitor experiences; and reflections on the practice of ecotourism in a range of different contexts.

Chapter 20: Ecotourism and the triple bottom line

Larry Dwyer and Deborah Edwards

Subjects: development studies, tourism, environment, ecological economics, environmental sociology, tourism, geography, tourism


Good managers recognize the monetary value that corporate reputation, employee loyalty, job satisfaction and positive government relations have on the single bottom line. Such factors enhance shareholder value. From this some theorists argue that a focus exclusively on profit will naturally inculcate behaviours that are socially and environmentally responsible. A contrary view is that, in reality, there exists today unprecedented pressure on business managers to satisfy short-term profits and immediate success, resulting not only in adverse social and environmental impacts of business operations but economic problems as well, as evidenced by the recent Global Financial Crisis. On what is perhaps the ‘standard view’ of industry responsibility, reflecting social movements, loose, flexible, evolving partnerships that create new market dynamics, the tourism industry shares with local residents, governments and community the obligation to protect and maintain the natural and cultural heritage resources of our planet, both to sustain economies and be passed on unimpaired to future generations (UNEP, 2001; WTO, 1995). Perhaps in no sector of tourism is meeting this responsibility more expected than in ecotourism.

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