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The following research paper will focus on discussing the research question: function of Corporate social responsibility in promoting sustainable tourism. Various aspects and models will be used to examine CSR role in developing sustainable tourism so that learning environments can be implemented to develop measures and strategies to promote CSR in tourism of Taranaki, New Zealand.
Statement of the Problem:
Tourism is a suitable choice for economic growth in various nations as it is seen as biggest contributors to a nation’s income and source of employment for people of society. But often non sustainable tourism ways can generate a significant implication on the condition and wellness of the environment and the society as well as on tourism itself. As tourism industry generally bring about negative implications on environment, community, culture and even in some cases on economy so sustainability approaches to tourism is very crucial. Though some nations use economic, governance and institutional policy archetypes for management of tourism while some private sector industries adopt corporate social responsibility measure and practices in order to acknowledge to external pressure but these initiatives are not enough as regulatory code of practices and certification is not far reaching in tourism as per international standards. As preservation of natural, cultural and artistic resources for conservation of environment and sustained wellness is essential for industries, staffs and host society so maintaining provisions for sustainable tourism is a vital necessity. As it is challenging to make abstractions on CSR without evaluating the framework of sustainability in tourism operations so in this paper the focus will be to understand role of CSR in promoting sustainable tourism and identify its demands and best practices in industry.
Tuan., L.T (2011) Corporate Social responsibility and sustainable tourism. Business and Economic Research, Vol 11, No. 1, pp 2-7. Retrieved from: http://macrothink.org/journal/index.php/ber/article/viewFile/890/1603 [Accessed on 27 Sep. 2018]
As opined by Tuan (2011) in the literature of his research paper sustainable tourism development concept is about creating tourism more congruent to needs and resources of destination area. As such tourism practices require considering a holistic and inclusive method that creates equilibrium between tourism developments with other enterprises. But as tourism is a fragmented industry so effectiveness and supervision through a single mechanism is very tough. The supply distribution of service to consumer is generally not governed by one group or personal and various components commonly operate through multiple stakeholders which results to difficulties in governing the elements of CSR in tourism. As CSR has same components to sustainable tourism where both focus on the manner the stakeholders are recognized and involved and on approaches that are examined to determine their impact on others so CSR and sustainable development impacts on tourism is vital to build opportunities for future and to preserve the needs of community. Hence ideas of CSR correlate to enterprise’s liability to become responsible to their stakeholders with their functions and practices with objective to achieve sustainable development not just in economic aspect but even in social and environmental aspects. As such sustainable tourism is viewed majorly for environmental conservation and has been integrated with social and community needs to address quality of life of natural area of tourism and also of those who visit these and those who live in such areas.
Findings from past research
Dodds, R., & Joppe, M. (2005). CSR in the Tourism Industry?: The Status of and Potential for Certification, Codes of Conduct and Guidelines. Pp 13-29, IFC. Retrieved from: http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=10.1.1.936.5425&rep=rep1 &type=pdf [Accessed on 27 Sep. 2018]
According to another authors Dodds & Joppe (2005) sustainable tourism has attained enlarged recognition in various industries and governments however as per tourism business interviewees just a small fraction of consumers care for these standards and for all intentions and reasons none of them are interested in paying more for compliance to environmental and/or social standards. Despite of this tourism industries focus on sustainable/ responsible measures and practices. Through secondary research and interviews conducted on reputed and niche tourism providers, certification plans and tourism specialist the authors established that certification plans though rising in volume and extent through a decade has not empowered (SME’s) with larger accessibility to market possibilities nor have they shifted tourism business considerably progressively en route to sustainability. Moreover policies inside industries are becoming more usual but their execution and valuation are yet unsteady. However the optimistic thing that was noted by authors was that certification labels of CSR and sustainability for tourism providers have made companies lower their costs specifically associated to environment such as water, waste or energy savings. These savings had supported businesses improvise their administration approaches and procedures even though there is meagre impulse to continue being part of such certification programs as there is no established marketing leverage and they are expensive.
The authors found that in order to continue and become successful these certifications programs need certain finite criteria such as there is requirement for single universal agency to establish and control the embracement of industry wide criterion. Next there needs to be more B2B marketing rather than B2C as awareness of consumers and their interest towards certification programs for sustainability tourism are very low. Thirdly, demand is required to be made amongst consumers with enhanced industry responsiveness reporting and awareness campaigns so that need for critical mass is attained for success of certifications. This is due to the reality that there are less than 1% of firms globally that have attained certification and hence other tourism providers who are interested to back such measures do not have sufficient products to select from which would not change their cost estimate as providers still are directed majorly through cost. Though some efforts are made to integrate certification schemes but complexities of schemes and politics in various nations do not allow larger success. Finally the authors found that quality should be associated with environmental and social governance so that certified products can assure a parameter of quality that has been attained and experience of product can be enlarged.
Kallio, E., (2018) Responsibility for sustainability within tourism –an emerging discourse. Master thesis in Sustainable Development at Uppsala University, No. 11, 51 pp. 30 Retrieved from: http://www.diva-portal.se/smash/get/diva2:1216270/FULLTEXT01.pdf [Accessed on 27 Sep. 2018]
According to another research paper the author Kallio (2018) stated that tourism industry is at a crucial point of time where the opportunities and threats correlated with industry experience have received global attention. While the tourism industry provides various opportunities by being biggest global industry but it has also contributed to global threats like warming and climate change. As such the industry has identified the need to move towards sustainable or more currently towards responsible tourism so as to go aboard the path of holistic sustainability. The universal significance of tourism’s scope to encourage sustainable development has been identified but yet there is debate on core of sustainable tourism lying on the apprehension of responsibility, specifically of different stakeholder’s responsibility for sustainability within tourism. Within this ideal consumers have a central role as they can drive industry’s course of action with their travel associated choices, yet there is a considerable inconsistency between consumer attitude about sustainability and their travel associated behavior and this imbalance reflects on the manner consumers assume their own responsibility for sustainability in context of tourism.
The author found that responsibility towards sustainability within tourism has materialized as its own, different discourse characterized with an unclear and complex nature where belief of responsibility is impacted with surrounding context that prevails in social norms and individual personality. Although responsibility for sustainability is identified for all tourism stakeholders but the findings suggest that consumers in specific withdraw themselves form responsibility and as such the industry is seen to be positioned in a state of lock-in. Further the findings reflect that there is a requirement to re-establish how and by whom responsibility is put together and framed within tourism while beliefs of sustainable lifestyle and global citizenship should be developed together with a new social pattern that challenges the existing issues.
Lund-Durlacher D. (2015) Corporate Social Responsibility and Tourism. Education for Sustainability in Tourism. CSR, Sustainability, Ethics & Governance., pp 59. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg Retrieved from: https://doi.org/10.1007/978- 3-662 47470-9_4 [Accessed on 27 Sep. 2018]
Author Lund-Durlacher (2015) in her research study found that there are many voluntary instruments to help enterprises integrate and execute CSR practices like conventional instruments for Eco-or CSR management systems that are founded on universal protocols like international standard for environmental management (ISO 14001), international standard for social responsibility or eco management and audit schemes (EMAS). These protocols and certifications are exhaustive mechanism and needs broad resources. Other than these schemes tourism industries have series of certification schemes and quality labels for environmentally and socially responsive tourism. The authors stated that such labels and protocols are voluntarily adopted by tourism business to set up social responsibility benchmark and formalize their procedures into business practices. According to authors findings there are two forms of fundamental certification schemes i.e. dynamic, process oriented schemes and static, result oriented schemes. The process directed schemes intends to continually improvise CSR performance within companies without the need for specific minimal merit to be attained for target meters while result directed schemes examine attainment against predetermined indicator values. The author also found that existing tourism business needs eco or CSR certification labels to make them competitive in industry and state their effectiveness and benefits for such schemes to their stakeholders. Besides there are also certain business related benefits like cost saving, capacity enhancement through awareness and learning shift to management and staffs, execution of efficacious governance mechanism and enhanced staff inspiration. The author found that effectiveness of these labels as tool of marketing is finite though efficaciousness of these to reflect CSR practices of tourism companies has positive impact on distinguished value for business. Moreover the author found that as customers look for tourism business that engage in socially responsive practices, environmental preservation of natural resources, protection of human rights, social justice etc so effectiveness of CSR practices with sustainability development approaches of tourism is of more interest for customers. As such customers give more attention to businesses that involve in social practices and only honor them if their social engagement aligns with customers interest as more of them significantly look for tourism products or services that fulfils elementary needs of social initiatives that can drive to more business.
1. Dodds, R., & Joppe, M. (2005). CSR in the Tourism Industry?: The Status of and Potential for Certification, Codes of Conduct and Guidelines. Pp 13-29, IFC. Retrieved from: http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=10.1.1.936.5425&rep=rep1 &type=pdf [Accessed on 27 Sep. 2018]
2. Kallio, E., (2018) Responsibility for sustainability within tourism –an emerging discourse. Master thesis in Sustainable Development at Uppsala University, No. 11, 51 pp. 30 Retrieved from: http://www.diva- portal.se/smash/get/diva2:1216270/FULLTEXT01.pdf [Accessed on 27 Sep. 2018]
3. Lund-Durlacher D. (2015) Corporate Social Responsibility and Tourism Research. Education for Sustainability in Tourism. CSR, Sustainability, Ethics & Governance., pp 59. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg Retrieved from: https://doi.org/10.1007/978- 3-662-47470-9_4 [Accessed on 27 Sep. 2018]
4. Tuan., L.T (2011) Corporate Social responsibility and sustainable tourism. Business and Economic Research, Vol 11, No. 1, pp 2-7. Retrieved from: http://macrothink.org/journal/index.php/ber/article/viewFile/890/1603 [Accessed on 27 Sep. 2018]