Children in Sustainable and Responsible Tourism

Cover of Children in Sustainable and Responsible Tourism
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(17 chapters)

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Pages i-xiii
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Section 1 Nature Based Strategy: Children as Sustainability Thinkers, Actioners, and Transformers

Abstract

Learning about wildlife is an important part of childhood education, but it is yet to be capitalised upon in the context of educational tourism. This chapter considers the different types of wildlife tourism that are available to children, how wildlife tourism experiences might have educational value and what the benefits of this niche tourism type might be. By providing insight into the educational elements of wildlife tourism, this chapter provokes analytical thinking about how this can be implemented and managed in a sustainable and responsible manner.

Abstract

Children have the ability to contribute to sustainable tourism research. A great deal of research on nature holiday has been conducted. However, it is unclear how this travel might serve as a good motivator for children to engage in environmentally responsible behaviour. To address this research gap, 72 drawings of children aged nine to 12 from Tehran, Iran, accompanied with the stories of their holiday were collected. Thematic analysis was done to assess their experience in nature and their cognitive state of environmental responsible behaviour. According to the finding, children are significantly concerned about nature, and they mostly perceived their best holidays in the natural environment. Children displayed a profound awareness of environmental responsible behaviour themes through their encounters with nature. Their experiences are classified into five levels: sensory, emotive, cognitive, behavioural and relationship. Each of these stages of experience may be used as a guideline for encouraging and training youngsters to be responsible.

Abstract

School trips to Outdoor Residential Centres can represent a significant and formative childhood tourism experience that can potentially influence adult tourism and leisure choices. Commonly located in ‘green spaces’ which range from peri-urban through to wild and natural landscapes, these centres offer adventurous outdoor activities. Alongside developmental and educational learning, children are immersed in nature experiences that can enable emotional connections with local environments. This chapter is based on a UK context, in which current policymaking is concerned with increasing inclusivity of access to British landscapes, in which many of these centres are located. It is argued here that Outdoor Residential Centres enable childhood experiences that can influence future consumer choices, alongside shaping support for the future protection of natural landscapes.

As a markedly under-explored area of the literature in the United Kingdom, this conceptual review of the literature sets out the imperative for understanding the vital role of Outdoor Residential Centres in shaping tourism futures. Through bringing together environmental education and psychology with tourism management literature, the chapter identifies the imperative for further research to enable nature connections through Outdoor Residential Centre experiences. This responds to the UK policy agenda to increase nature connections and support conservation. The application of a ‘sustainable children typology’ to a Welsh case study demonstrates how Residential Outdoor Centres enable children's empowerment through outdoor learning experiences that shape them as ‘sustainability thinkers’ and to potentially influence pro-environmental attitudes and behaviours as ‘sustainability transformers’ – and ultimately, eco-literate tourists.

Abstract

Tourist decision-making has served as a valuable source in shaping management strategies and firm development by the tourism and hospitality industry. The influence of children on sustainable leadership is becoming increasingly important for service industries. However, little research has been dedicated to the role that children play in the sustainability of the tourism industry. The aim of this chapter is to understand the roles of children promotion of sustainability leadership. The chapter provides insight into the role of children on sustainability management and assesses their perceptions of environmental sustainability. A total of 346 questionnaires were collected. The results indicate that children may influence sustainable leadership management by the roles as thinkers, actioners and transformers of tourist destinations. Relevant management and marketing implications were discussed, and the results provide a perspective about planning and development to increase tourist satisfaction. The research shows that children have great potential for future sustainability management of the tourism industry.

Abstract

The hospitality sector, via resort mini-clubs also referred as kids' clubs, has put in place initiatives to empower children to be responsible tourists. This is all the more important as children are the tourists of the future. In their endeavour to educate children during their holidays, many of the activities developed by resort mini-clubs are nature-based; on the long term, this strategy is likely to contribute to the long-term sustainability of the industry. Indeed, the closer an individual is to nature, the more likely this person is to be respectful of the environment. Developing these types of activities could also contribute to the competitive advantage of resorts as most resort mini-clubs are not offering yet this type of sustainability-orientated activities. From a theoretical perspective, resort-mini clubs could be assimilated to lieu de mémoire, and as a result they have the potential to influence the sustainability attitude of the future young adults, and adults whom the children will be.

Section 2 Non-nature Based Strategy: Children as Sustainability Thinkers, Actioners and Transformers

Abstract

While it is recognised that the involvement of children in sustainable tourism change and development is crucial the fact remains that information on their worldviews and sustainable tourism behaviour is scarcely available. One long-term empowerment strategy countries and governments around the world can implement is by promoting children's rights through responsible education. This chapter articulates one tactic of that strategy at the local action level of school excursions, which is seen as an instrument that can be made most effective when it is initiated with the assumption that it is needed to help our younger generation acquire an environmental worldview, is harnessed in coalition with collaborators and, applied around the ‘moral’ obligation of educational institutions to provide agency to students' voice. Of the 17 Goals of Sustainable Development, SDG4 (Quality) Education can make a critically important contribution to progress. A series of activities and initiatives undertaken in informal educational environments such as field trips and school excursions can contribute to educating children, building their awareness about responsible and sustainable tourism practices, and developing an environmental sensitivity. Excursion activities and destinations such as museum exhibits have the opportunity to shape identities—through access to objects, information and knowledge. Visitors can see themselves and their culture reflected in ways that encourage new connections, meaning making and learning. Upon looking into transformational experiences in museums it was found that students were easily able to articulate that ‘aha’ moment, particularly around thinking differently about issues and taking action for environmental and sustainable changes.

Abstract

Responsible tourism is a current theme in the line of work on sustainable development alternatives, both ecological and economical and social and societal. The concept has received very little attention from researchers in emerging countries and even less when exploring the weight and role of children in understanding, adopting and initiating attitudinal change toward sustainable tourism. First, this chapter examines the knowledge of the dimensions of responsible tourism and their integration into a process of child empowerment. The qualitative study results with 19 children aged between 6 and 15 years show a lack of understanding of the components and scope of the concept among younger children, while recognition of ecological considerations among older children is relatively high. Nevertheless, children of all ages show a willingness to become active agents of change in their immediate environment if supported by the community. The results also show that children's reflexivity can be strengthened through education for sustainable development (ESD) while allowing them to occupy the space and place necessary for their empowerment regarding ecology and tourism.

Abstract

This paper asserts that sustainable tourism education is an issue of extreme importance, especially for young adolescents, ages 10 to 12. Despite little intersection between middle-school education and tourism education, these two fields can become natural allies. Today's preteens not only influence their parent's tourism choices but will shape tomorrow's tourism, both as tourists and as hosts. This study is addressing the following research questions: if transformational school trips with tourism sustainability education proposes improve or enhance students' confidence and initiative, and how middle school individuals can become familiar with responsible and sustainable tourism and act upon it. Thus, the conceptual framework offered in this article is intended to contribute to a more systematic, programmatic, theory-based approach to the study of education for sustainable tourism in middle schools, and that by empowering students through travel. Results suggest that empowering middle-school individuals is halfway to achieve tourism sustainability goals.

Abstract

This chapter seeks to examine the roles of child rights in fostering inclusive sustainable tourism development in Kenyan context. Specifically, it examines the importance of protective, participatory and provision rights of children in tourism sector in African context. The chapter adopts an interdisciplinary content analysis approach to determine themes and relationships between child rights and inclusive sustainable tourism development studies. Theoretical discussion on the contested ideologies on child rights brings out the varied multi-disciplinary perspectives on child rights that continue to create differences in views about the roles of children in tourism especially in African context. The chapter findings show that child right approach is required in the development of a more integrated, inclusive and sustainable tourism sector. Further, a framework for child centered integrated rights approach to Sustainable Tourism is proposed and the study examines the parameters toward advancing the child rights approach. In order to address the vulnerabilities, negative impacts and marginalization of children in tourism development and planning discourse in African context, there is need to design and build safeguards that reduce the exposure of children in African context by focusing on children-centric tourism development strategies and policies for the sector.

Abstract

Recent years have seen growing concern about the climate crisis. Lack of adequate attention on this issue from governments and industries has prompted social movements against climate change. Youth activism has been particularly effective at advancing the cause, especially campaign work by children, most notably Greta Thunberg. The tourism industry impacts global carbon emissions, particularly due to international travel. Sustainable tourism is therefore becoming increasingly important in order to help respond to the climate crisis and protect the individual rights of citizens, including children. Children have unique and important insights to offer, yet they are in a democratically weak position given that they cannot vote and are often wholly reliant on others to represent their interests. However, when we allow children to occupy legal and political spaces and support them with participatory democracy, such as through supporting the child's right to protest or supporting strategic litigation, significant progress can be made for climate justice and a more sustainable future. Adults have a responsibility to respond positively to the work of youth activists to help nurture and encourage the environmentally conscious attitudes of children into adulthood.

Abstract

This chapter proposes an insight of the involvement of children in sustainability activities at the African Network for Policy Research and Advocacy for Sustainability (ANPRAS), a non-governmental organisation (NGO) established in Mauritius and affiliated with the African Union. The objective is to demonstrate that children, as ambassadors, and through civic actions, can assume leading positions to remind communities of their responsibilities towards the achievement of sustainability goals. The methodology is based on desk-based research, archived documents at ANPRAS office and information from its website. Data were analysed using the interpretivist paradigms. The overall findings show that children, as sustainability ambassadors, can act as potential agents of change, as they play pivotal roles in decision-making of their parents. Engaging children in sustainability actions transforms children into sustainability advocates and in return, they are empowered to rope in their parents, relatives, friends and peers. Children as sustainability transformers have successfully demonstrated how they aligned themselves with the philosophy of ANPRAS: a small step in sustainability, a significant step in philanthropy. Unlike a number of studies which portray children as undermined members of the community, this chapter by shows that children in Mauritius occupy a leading position in civic actions and sustainability activities organised by ANPRAS provide anecdotal evidence on children's pivotal roles in attaining sustainability goals. The chapter advocates for children empowerment which should be a core component of sustainability initiatives, as children's support is required to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). As a result, recommendations from this chapter give sufficient substance to explain that children are neither passive nor powerless. The conclusion of this chapter serves as inspiration to other NGOs and organisations seeking to engage children, as ambassador in sustainability initiatives.

Abstract

Children are not only capable of learning and adopting sustainable behaviours but also can be influencers and sustainability actioners to motivate others to make these behaviour changes in their communities and around the world. Their ability to reach wide public audiences is a result of globalised social media platforms and increased visibility through documentaries and TV shows. This not only allows them to reach out to their peers but also to influence people of multiple generations to incorporate sustainable practices into their daily routines. Schools systems are also understanding the importance of embedding lessons and extracurricular activities with sustainable themes, which allows students to use their creativity to explore these topics further. National and global organisations are encouraging children and youth to spread messages of sustainability through competitions, which gives them the opportunity to use resources from well-funded organisations to help spread their message. These multi-faceted opportunities give children a variety of ways to utilise their skills and creativity to reach a wide and diverse audience.

Abstract

The purpose of this chapter is to present secondary data around how the Principles for Responsible Management Education (PRME) are adopted in a global context whilst making comparisons with the Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Index from the Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Report 2019. The discussion is centred around young adults (Generation Z) and their potential role and importance. In essence, we are trying to examine if tourism sustainability educational practice adopted within countries appears to transition into industry practice. For this, we consider success both from the perspective of tourism sustainability and general economic competitiveness. The findings suggest significant gaps (or current failure) between PRME delivery and achieving tourism sustainability globally, but generally highlight economic success where PRME uptake is strong. Thus, it would appear that PRME is not yet transitioning into industry practice; therefore, more needs to be done or adapted to achieve greater tourism sustainability, and we emphasise the role of Generation Z within this.

Index

Pages 231-237
Content available
Cover of Children in Sustainable and Responsible Tourism
DOI
10.1108/9781801176569
Publication date
2022-03-07
Editor
ISBN
978-1-80117-657-6
eISBN
978-1-80117-656-9