Responsibility in Practice: Adventure Tour Operators

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper


Responsible tourism is a strategy to manage the consequences of tourism for the environment, societies, economies and tourists by encouraging all stakeholders to take responsibility for their actions. This paper investigates the factors influential to the implementation of responsible tourism on the part of UK based adventure tour operators, who are considered to play a pivotal role in the distribution of tourism products. The study focuses specifically on UK based, small to medium-sized adventure tour operators operating in the international marketplace, predominately in remote destinations in developed and developing countries. This empirical research adopts a qualitative approach, employing semi-structured ‘elite’ interviews with senior management and product development managers. Using template analysis to analyse the data leads to the identification of major themes and subthemes pertinent to the implementation of responsible tourism.

The key findings of this paper are that UK based adventure tour operators do not consider that they achieve a competitive advantage through responsible tourism, or that there is a noticeable consumer demand for such products. This research establishes that it is the values of the company and their commitment to improve practices which are critical to the implementation of responsible practices.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 6 Nov 2015
Event3rd Annual International Conference on Hospitality & Tourism Management - Hotel Galadari, Columbo, Sri Lanka
Duration: 5 Nov 20156 Nov 2015


Conference3rd Annual International Conference on Hospitality & Tourism Management
Abbreviated titleICOHT 2015
Country/TerritorySri Lanka


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