Understanding climate change vulnerability and resilience of tourism destinations: an example of community-based tourism in Samoa
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Samoa, a Paciﬁc small island developing state and territory (SIDST) (Figure 14.1) has been identiﬁed as a ‘climate-tourism hotspot’ where climate change is projected to have a major adverse eﬀect on tourism (Becken and Hay, 2007; Scott et al., 2008). As Samoa’s leading foreign exchange earner, tourism accounts for over 20% of gross domestic product (GDP) (Samoa Ministry of Finance, 2012) and is a major employer, representing 10% of direct employment (Samoa Tourism Authority, 2009). Unlike Paciﬁc destinations such as Fiji and New Caledonia, where large resorts are numerous, Samoa’s tourism is dominated by small-scale operations owned and run by local people and communities (Harrison and Prasad, 2013; Scheyvens, 2005). Consequently, tourism makes a signiﬁcant direct contribution to the social and economic development of Samoa. Samoan tourism suﬀers from a range of diﬃculties associated with its location and size as a SIDST, including isolation from major markets, small population, limited transportation links, lack of local technical skills and inadequate levels of local capital. This in turn leads to lower resilience to external risks (Scheyvens and Momsen, 2008). Furthermore, it is expected to experience a range of climate change-related impacts similar to those forecast for the central Paciﬁc region (AGBOM and CSIRO, 2011; AusAID et al., 2011). Therefore, concerted eﬀorts are needed to protect and strengthen the resilience of the tourism sector to the challenges and risks resulting from future climate change. In order to maintain and enhance tourism’s resilience at a time of continuing rapid change (caused by nature as well as human activities), it is vital to have a sophisticated understanding of the factors that contribute to the underlying vulnerability of an aﬀected destination (Calgaro and Lloyd, 2008; Calgaro et al., 2013a, 2013b). From this understanding, appropriate adaptation strategies may be proposed to reduce vulnerability and protect and enhance resilience.
Tourism in Pacific Islands: Current issues and future challenges
Tourism not elsewhere classified