Article

Sustainable tourism development in Amsterdam Oud-West

Published in: Research in Hospitality Management
Volume 8, issue 2, 2018 , pages: 133–141
DOI: 10.1080/22243534.2018.1553384
Author(s): Thea NoordeloosInternational Hospitality and Service Management, The Netherlands

Abstract

The Netherlands is currently experiencing rapid tourism growth, with Amsterdam being the main destination. Academics widely discuss the impact of tourism on the environment, the economy and society, and stress the need for sustainable tourism development. Eight semi-structured interviews were conducted with key stakeholders (municipality, residents, and the tourism industry) to explore the current tourism situation and the extent to which sustainable tourism development is being applied in Amsterdam Oud-West. The main focus entailed two crucial aspects of the concept: stakeholder participation and strategic long-term tourism planning. Findings suggest that, although tourism numbers are increasing and further growth is expected, the situation in Oud-West is still in balance. Tourism adds value for the local economy, the society and the environment in a way that income is generated, jobs are created, contact with tourists is appreciated and the area “perks up”. On the other hand, the increase in real estate prices, pollution, nuisance and unsafe traffic are downsides. It is suggested 1) to further research the balance of stakeholder involvement in general because many researchers stress that all stakeholders should be involved in tourism planning, while participants indicated that not all stakeholders might have the right knowledge, and sometimes it can be inefficient and ineffective to involve stakeholders, and 2) to involve, along with residents, other stakeholder groups in the discussions regarding the plans for the destination. Currently, mainly residents are involved, while the interviews indicated that other stakeholder groups can add much value to the discussions.

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