Author : Felicité A. Fairer-Wessels
School/Work Place : University of Pretoria, South Africa
Contact :
Year : 2013

Rural communities in South Africa have not been active stakeholders in tourism development. Community awareness and involvement in the preservation of natural and cultural heritage through sustainable tourism development in selected areas adjacent to the protected iSimangaliso Wetland Park , World Heritage Site, in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, is investigated.

Sustainable development as concept is defined as meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs (Brundtland, 1987) within political; economic; socio-cultural; and eco/environmental environments (Queiros, 2003). Sustainable tourism development is therefore seen as imperative to ensure successful livelihood of communities and minimize negative impacts on these environments. Accordingly rural communities in South Africa must be empowered to participate in job creation through local procurement, partnerships, generating business and sharing customers. Therefore communities need funding and /or capital (Okazaki, 2008; Tosun, 2000), market access and opportunities to upgrade and expand their businesses. The tourism sector can provide a direct market as well as advice and support to community members (Ashley & Jones, 2001; Botha 2006; Qua-Noo, 2001; Van Rooyen, 2003). Amongst other initiatives, local authentic cultural festivals and traditions (Dlamini, 1999; Larlham, 1981; Zibani, 2002) can be used to attract tourists that promote the conservation of the environment and local heritage (Van Zyl & Botha, 2004), generate employment opportunities and economic benefits (Apleni, n.d.; Arcodia & Whitford, 2006; Prentice & Andersen, 2003).

Through the UN Millennium Development Goals (United Nations, 2010), South Africa as a member state strives to advance on the eight goals that seek development and progress. This research indirectly addresses Goals 1 and 7: Goal 1 that aims to eradicate extreme poverty and hunger - communities in the researched areas suffer from hunger due to lack of food and water; and Goal 7 that aims to ensure environmental sustainability, also perceived as relevant with the researched impovished rural communities.

List of Articles
No. Subject Views Datesort
6 Think Tank IV Cultural Tourism as a Means for Sustainability in a Ma... file 3709 Oct 13, 2013

Tourism has become for many islands a means of social, economic and cultural development through the creation of jobs, raising standards of living and through the development of local resources for culture and heritage. Thus, many of these d...

Author: Chryso Panayidou 

Year: 2004 

5 Think Tank IV Impediments to Sustainable Service Quality in Luxury H... file 15264 Oct 13, 2013

In order for tourism to be sustainable in the long term, there must be continued viability of tourism related entities (Tesone 2004), that is business operations must be sustainable. Hotels are major tourism entities and play an important ro...

Author: Rayka Presbury 

Year: 2004 

4 Think Tank IV After the Sydney Olympic Games: Sustainable Infrastruc... file 2734 Oct 13, 2013

Olympic Games epitomize the definition of a mega event, due to the size and scope that these events have in terms of participation, worldwide viewing and infrastructure development. However with the commercialization of these events over the...

Author: Sacha Reid 

Year: 2004 

3 Think Tank IV Sustainability and Mass Destinations: Challenges and P... file 3788 Oct 13, 2013

In year 2001, the Government of the Balearic Islands decided to establish a tourism tax, named "ecotax", as an important measure to achieve a more sustainable tourism model for the islands. This paper analyses the background of the ecotax, t...

Author: Antoni Serra Cantallops 

Year: 2004 

2 Think Tank IV Sustainability in a Mature Mass-Tourism Destination: T... file 3599 Oct 13, 2013

Most destinations are struggling to achieve sustainability for their economies, their environments, their cultures and their tourism industries. This laudatory, idealistic and complex process involves many sectors of the industry, the commun...

Author: Pauline Sheldon, John Knox & Kem Lowry 

Year: 2004 

1 Think Tank IV The Benefits of Visitor and Non-Visitor Research in th... file 2980 Oct 13, 2013

Our premise in this paper is that if sustainable tourism development and management is to meet the needs of both the present and the future then it is equally important to prioritise research on those who visit tourism destinations (and incl...

Author: Pat Sterry & Debra Leighton 

Year: 2004