This paper aims to assess how a hotel geographical location in different parts of Central and Eastern Europe influences the complexity of perception of pro-environmental behavior.
To find out, whether hotel location in a specific country influences the complexity of environmental practices, this study used two closely connected multivariate statistical techniques analyzing gradients: principal components analysis and partial redundancy analysis. The research comprises data collection from seven countries in Central and Eastern Europe. In all, 25 randomly selected hotels (based on star rating) from various countries were approached to complete a questionnaire. Environmental practices were studied based on motivations, perception of barriers, perception of support from different levels of public sector, will of managers to promote pro-environmental measures based on sufficient funding, perception of legislation and perception of various other important factors.
The study reveals significant differences between hotels in Central Europe and Eastern Europe in the perception of the complexity in implementation of the environmental practices by hotel managers. The character of the present study, however, needs to address the identification of particular aspects that are relevant to the geographical differences among the studied countries.
Research was limited to a selection of Central and Eastern European (CEE) countries. There is still probability that managers in hotels from Poland and Croatia could possess different preferences. Other limitation of this study is that only special part of hotels were asked – hotels certified by star grading, out of our scope remained other hotels. It is also known that important factor is precise location of hotel within country – hotels in established tourism destination behave other way that those outside recreational areas. These factors deserve further study within this topic. There are many aspects of sustainability and environmental protection regarding hotel industry. As we have found in our principal correspondence analysis, different environmental measures were different location in biplot – some were affected by country, the other by star grading and affiliation to hotel chain. The complexity deserves to be studied in depth.
The importance lies first in the identification of the aspects that are governed by geographical differences among the countries studied. These aspects are the initiatives and support from the government and the local governments, which counteract the perception that there is a lack of financial resources and the return on investments is slow. So, based on the data, which included information from various types of hotels from seven CEE countries, the activities of national and local authorities were identified to be the main differentiating variable. The support of the environment-friendly conduct of business in the hotel industry is appreciated by hotel managers from Central Europe. On the other hand, hotel managers from Eastern Europe do not feel any significant support from either national or other public institutions. The second factor of differentiation is represented by the perception of the lack of funds. Hotel managers from Eastern Europe feel strongly about funds limitation. The coherence of both those factors is obvious in the results, as they show the same direction but opposite orientation. It has already been discussed above. When looking at the results, the authors find the perception of availability of funds to be a fundamental difference between hotel management in Central Europe and in Eastern Europe. The lack of funds is perceived more intensively in Eastern Europe than in Central Europe, particularly because of a stronger awareness of direct or indirect support for such activities by national and other public institutions in Central Europe.
The differentiation of the aspects mentioned above comes from the social and culture policies, company policies and business cultures between these two sub-realms. Pro-environmental actions are apparently promoted less publicly in Eastern European countries than in Central European countries. The reaction to the trend for demand of greener hotels is stronger in the West, and its hotels are more likely to have legislation requirements and public support as an incentive to adopt pro-environmental measures in their business operations.
The study is based on data obtained from seven countries. The results revealed a problem of the macro-environmental influence on hotels’ potential to implement environmentally sustainable approaches and procedures throughout the industry.
Data used in this paper were issued from a research that was supported by the Foundation pour la Formation Hôtelière: “Joint Research,” registered N 13-102/0011-00 at the University of Economics in Bratislava and by the project No. IGS10A1, “Aspects and Preconditions of the Sustainable Development of Region in the Context of Business Opportunities,” at the Faculty of Economics, University of South Bohemia in České Budějovice. The authors would like to thank Bob Smith from Cardiff University, who helped them with correction of their English.
Novacka, L., Pícha, K., Navratil, J., Topaloglu, C. and Švec, R. (2019), "Adopting environmentally friendly mechanisms in the hotel industry: A perspective of hotel managers in Central and Eastern European countries", International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management, Vol. 31 No. 6, pp. 2488-2508. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJCHM-04-2018-0284
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