The Economics of Tourism and Sustainable Development

The Economics of Tourism and Sustainable Development

The Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei series on Economics, the Environment and Sustainable Development

Edited by Alessandro Lanza, Anil Markandya and Francesco Pigliaru

Although economics has increasingly become a technical subject, this accessible book aims to present important economics results and relate them explicitly to the policy debate. Using a coherent analytical framework, this unique approach offers prescriptions for moving tourism, and economic development more generally, closer to a sustainable ideal. The authors begin by studying the macroeconomic effect of tourism in terms of growth performance and sources of growth. They also examine how the tourism–growth link is affected by the role of imports in the economy, and how tourism impacts upon land use. Further chapters investigate the important issue of forecasting visitor numbers and explore the need for a comprehensive accounting framework to take account of ecologically sustainable tourism. The authors also examine the microeconomic aspects of sustainable tourism and analyse the increasing popularity of environmentally friendly holidays.


Alessandro Lanza, Anil Markandya and Francesco Pigliaru

Subjects: development studies, tourism, economics and finance, environmental economics, environment, environmental economics, tourism, geography, tourism


Alessandro Lanza, Anil Markandya and Francesco Pigliaru Tourism is big business and getting bigger. In the 20 years from 1980 to 2000 global tourism receipts increased at an annual rate of nearly 8 per cent, much faster than the rate of world economic growth of around 3 per cent. In 2000, income from tourism combined with passenger transport totaled more than $575 billion, making this sector the world number one export earner, ahead of automotive production, chemicals, petroleum and food (UNEP web site1). So it is no surprise that people are paying attention to tourism when they debate how the world can move to a more sustainable pattern of development. Given the increasing importance of the sector, an enormous literature has emerged on the three pillars of sustainable development – environmental, cultural and economic – and on how tourism impacts on them and how these aspects of tourism can be enhanced. In this active and somewhat crowded field, what is the purpose of introducing yet another book? In spite of all that has been produced, we would argue that we do offer something special. Unlike much of the literature that has primarily an environment and sociological perspective, our effort is firmly grounded in economics – its theory and applications. Economics here is made to be the servant of policy in the field of tourism. But economics has increasingly become a technical subject and its methods and results are not easy for the policy maker to comprehend. In this book, we try...