Sustainable tourism development
This chapter explores the link between regional economic development and sustainable tourism practices in the Mediterranean countries. From an economics standpoint, it can be argued that developed regions may have more incentives to foster a business environment that encourages and motivates sustainability practices. Yet, the opposite can be the fact. For instance, rural-based tourism is used in many European countries (e.g. France, Italy, Spain and Portugal) to bolster the sustainability of rural economies and societies and compensate for the decline in traditional agricultural production (Swarbrooke, 1999). Therefore, sustainable tourism development may not be regarded as a distinct construct that is affected from the overall economic development, but rather should be seen as a component of the overall economic development. To understand this phenomenon, a detailed investigation of sustainable tourism practices will be conducted for various Mediterranean countries along with these countries’ overall economic development; and policy suggestions will be developed. The chapter relies primarily on secondary data and large literature on sustainability and economic development.